A landrace is a
A significant proportion of farmers around the world grow landrace
Plant landraces have been the subject of more academic research, and the majority of academic literature about landraces is focused on botany in agriculture, not animal husbandry. Animal landraces are distinct from ancestral wild species of modern animal stock, and are also distinct from separate species or subspecies derived from the same ancestor as modern domestic stock. Not all landraces derive from wild or ancient animal stock; in some cases, notably dogs and horses, domestic animals have escaped in sufficient numbers in an area to breed feral populations that form new landraces through evolutionary pressure.
There are differences between authoritative sources on the specific criteria which describe landraces, although there is broad consensus about the existence and utility of the classification. Individual criteria may be weighted differently depending on a given source's focus (e.g., governmental
- It is morphologically distinctive and identifiable (i.e., has particular and recognizable characteristics or properties), yet remains "dynamic".
- It is genetically adapted to, and has a reputation for being able to withstand, the conditions of the local environment, including climate, disease and pests, even cultural practices.
- It is not the product of formal (governmental, organizational, or private) breeding programs, and may lack systematic selection, development and improvement by breeders.
- It is maintained and fostered less deliberately than a standardized breed, with its genetic isolation principally a matter of geography acting upon whatever animals that happened to be brought by humans to a given area.
- It has a historical origin in a specific geographic area, will usually have its own local name(s), and will often be classified according to intended purpose.
- Where yield (e.g. of a grain or fruit crop) can be measured, a landrace will show high stability of yield, even under adverse conditions, but a moderate yield level, even under carefully managed conditions.
- At the level of genetic testing, its heredity will show a degree of integrity, but still some genetic heterogeneity (i.e. genetic diversity).
Landrace literally means 'country-breed' (German: Landrasse)
The word landrace entered non-academic English in the early 1930s, by way of the Danish Landrace pig, a particular breed of lop-eared swine. Many other languages do not use separate terms, like landrace and breed, but instead rely on extended description to convey such distinctions. Spanish is one such language.
Geneticist D. Phillip Sponenberg described animal breeds within these classes: the landrace, the standardized breed, modern "type" breeds, industrial strains, and feral populations. He describes landraces as an early stage of breed development, created by a combination of founder effect, isolation, and environmental pressures. Human selection for production goals is also typical of landraces.
As discussed in more detail in
In various domestic species (including pigs, goats, sheep and geese) some standardized breeds include "Landrace" in their names, but do not meet widely used definitions of landraces. For example, the British Landrace pig is a standardized breed, derived from earlier breeds with "Landrace" names.
Farmers' variety, usually applied to local cultivars, or seen as intermediate between a landrace and a cultivar, may also include landraces when referring to plant varieties not subjected to formal breeding programs.
Autochthonous and allochthonous landraces
A landrace native to, or produced for a long time within the agricultural system in which it is found is referred to as an autochthonous landrace, while a more recently introduced one is termed an allochthonous landrace.
Within academic agronomy, the term autochthonous landrace is sometimes used with a more technical, productivity-related definition, synthesized by A. C. Zeven from previous definitions beginning with Mansholt's: "an autochthonous landrace is a variety with a high capacity to tolerate biotic and abiotic stress, resulting in a high yield stability and an intermediate yield level under a low input agricultural system."
The terms autochthonous and allochthonous are most often applied to plants, with animals more often being referred to as indigenous or native. Examples of references in sources to long-term local landraces of livestock include constructions such as "indigenous landraces of sheep", and "Leicester Longwool sheep were bred to the native landraces of the region". Some usage of autochthonous does occur in reference to livestock, e.g. "autochthonous races of cattle such as the Asturian mountain cattle – Ratina and Casina – and Tudanca cattle."
Biodiversity and conservation
A significant proportion of farmers around the world grow landrace crops. However, as industrialized agriculture spreads, cultivars, which are selectively bred for high yield, rapid growth, disease and drought resistance, and other commercial production values, are supplanting landraces, putting more and more of them at risk of extinction.
In 1927 at the International Agricultural Congress, organized by the predecessor of the FAO, an extensive discussion was held on the need to conserve landraces. A recommendation that members organize nation-by-nation landrace conservation did not succeed in leading to widespread conservation efforts.
Landraces are often free from many intellectual property and other regulatory encumbrances. However, in some jurisdictions, a focus on their production may result in missing out on some benefits afforded to producers of genetically selected and homogenous organisms, including breeders' rights legislation, easier availability of loans and other business services, even the right to share seed or stock with others, depending on how favorable the laws in the area are to high-yield agribusiness interests.
As Regine Andersen of the Fridtjof Nansen Institute (Norway) and the Farmers' Rights Project puts it, "Agricultural biodiversity is being eroded. This trend is putting at risk the ability of future generations to feed themselves. In order to reverse the trend, new policies must be implemented worldwide. The irony of the matter is that the poorest farmers are the stewards of genetic diversity."
Landraces played a basic role in the development of the standardized breeds but are today threatened by the market success of the standardized breeds. In developing countries, landraces still play an important role, especially in traditional production systems. Specimens within an animal landrace tend to be genetically similar, though more diverse than members of a standardized or formal breed.
In situ and ex situ landrace conservation
Two approaches have been used to conserve plant landraces:
- in situ where the landrace is grown and conserved by farmers on farms.
- ex situ where the landrace is conserved in an artificial environment such as a gene-bank, using controls such as laminated packets kept frozen at −18 °C (0 °F).
As the amount of agricultural land dedicated to growing landrace crops declines, such as in the example of wheat landraces in the Fertile Crescent, landraces can become extinct in cultivation. Therefore ex situ landrace conservation practices are considered a way to avoid losing the genetic diversity completely. Research published in 2020 suggested that existing ways of cataloging diversity within ex situ genebanks fall short of cataloging the appropriate information for landrace crops.
An in situ conservation effort to save the
Preserving cereal landraces
Preservation efforts for cereal strains are ongoing including
An agricultural study published in 2008 showed that landrace
This section needs expansion with: links to articles on specific botanical landraces. You can help by adding to it. (August 2014)
Plant landrace development
The label landrace includes regional
In some cultures, development of new landraces is typically limited to members of specific social groups, such as women or shaman. Maintaining existing landraces, like developing new landraces, requires that farmers be able to identify crop-specific characteristics and that those characteristics are passed on to following generations.
Over time, the process of identifying the distinguishing characteristic or characteristics of a new landrace is reinforced by cultivation processes; for example, descendants of a plant that is notably drought tolerant may become iteratively more so through selective breeding as farmers regard it as better for dry areas and prioritize planting it in those locations. This is one way in which farming systems can develop a portfolio of landraces over time that have specific ecological niches and uses.
Conversely, modern cultivars can also be developed into a landrace over time when farmers save seed and practice selective breeding.
Although landraces are often discussed once they have become endemic to a particular geographical region, landraces have always been moved over long and short distances. Some landraces can adapt to various environments, while others only thrive within specific conditions. Self-fertilizing and vegetatively populated species adapt by changing the frequencies of phenotypes. Outbreeding crops absorb new genotypes through intentional and unintentional hybridization, or through mutation.
Cultivars developed from landraces
Members of a landrace variety, selected for uniformity with regards to a unique feature over a period of time, can be developed into a farmers' variety or
|Cucurbita maxima||Nebraska||Developed from a squash landrace grown by Native Americans living along the Missouri Valley along with germplasm from |
Hubbard squash or a similar cultivar
Examples of plant landraces
|Caparrona bean||Phaseolus vulgaris||Monzón, Italy||Also known by the name of Caparrona de Monzón, characterized by highly productive plants with white beans that have a brown pattern around the hilum, medium brilliance, and oval shape. The Caparrona bean is usually used as a dry bean but can also be eaten as a green bean.|
|Carota di Polignano||Daucus carota||Polignano, Italy||Multicolored roots from yellow to purple|
|Afghanistan||Has green, red, pink, or white pods that have a variety of shapes and sizes.|
|Acorazado, Acorazonado, Queen of Malinalco, Reina de Malinalco||
|Malinalco||The name translates as "heart shaped", reflecting morphology which has also been described as "pointed or torpedo shaped", which is unusual for a tomatillo. The tomatillos taste fruity and sweet.|
|Jumli Marshi||Nepal||A cold-tolerant and popular rice landrace grown in mountain ecosystems. An evolutionary plant breeding program was used to increase its resistance to blast disease while maintaining landrace diversity.|
|Berrettina di Lungavilla||Cucurbita maxima||
Po river floodplain, Italy
|From the Po floodplain in Northern Italy that nearly went extinct|
Cappello da prete
|Plato kuum, cmejen kuum, calabacita kuum, xplato, ’kuum||Likely Cucurbita moschata||Yucatán, Mexico||Squash with 'pepita menuda' (Spanish) meaning 'thin seeds' Known as the 'little sister' to Cucurbita moschata Xnuk kuum. Xplato (Mayan-Spanish) literally translates to flat plate. Used for making a sweet called calabaza melada.|
|Candy roaster||Cucurbita maxima||Southern Appalachia||Developed by the Cherokee people. A United States Department of Agriculture accession in 1960 notes that Candy Roasters had been grown for more than 100 years as of that date. It is variable in size and shape with more than 40 distinct forms according to one authority. Candy roasters consistently feature fine-textured orange flesh, while varying in size (from 10 lbs to more than 250 lbs); shape (including round, cylindrical, teardrop, and blocky); and color (pink, tan, green, blue, gray, and orange).|
|Nanticoke squash||Cucurbita maxima||Maryland and Delaware||Cultivated by the Nanticoke (or Kuskarawaok) people, one of the southernmost groups in the Algonquin language family, who lived in the area now known as Maryland and Delaware during the American colonial period when Cucurbita maxima arrived in North America. The wide diversity of the fruit reflects the genetic diversity of the landrace.|
|Seminole Pumpkin||Cucurbita moschata||Florida||A landrace originally cultivated by the Seminole people of what is now Florida. Naturalists recorded Seminole pumpkins hanging from trees in the 18th century.|
|Cacho de cabra||Capsicum anuum||Maule region of Chile||Considered to be the most popular in the region of Maule|
|Chileno negro||Capsicum baccatum||Maule region of Chile|
|Chimayó, New Mexico||Considered the most well known of the New Mexico chile landraces|
|Santo Domingo Pueblo chili||
Santo Domingo Pueblo
|An early-maturing landrace from the pueblo that served as a headquarters for Spanish colonial missions as well as a key location of resistance against the Spanish settlers in the 1600s.|
|Coeur de bue tomato|
|San Marzano tomato|
Animal landrace development
Some standardized animal breeds originate from attempts to make landraces more consistent through
While many landrace animals are associated with farming, other domestic animals have been put to use as modes of transportation, as
Examples of animal landraces
Many standardized breeds have rather recently (within a century or less) been derived from landraces. Examples, often called natural breeds, include
In some cases, such as the Turkish Angora and Turkish Van breeds and their possible derivation from the Van cat landrace, the relationships are not entirely clear.
|Thai||Thailand||The ancestor of the Siamese cat breed, among many others.|
|Van cat||Turkey||The Van cat of modern-day Turkey is a landrace of symbolic and (disputed) cultural value to Turks, Armenians and Kurds.|
|Icelandic cattle||Iceland||As a population dating from the era of Icelandic settlement they are likely the oldest cattle landrace in Europe, owing to their genetic isolation for most of that time.|
|Noted as the northernmost cattle landrace, and the most genetically dissimilar to other cattle.|
This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. The specific problem is: quality of website sources. (October 2015)
Landrace dogs have more variety in their appearance than do standardized dog breeds.
The ancient landrace dogs of the
|Carolina Dog or Yellow Dog||Developed from dogs originally from Asia this landrace has been the basis of the Carolina Dog standardized breed.|
|Scotland||The Rough Collie was bred from the Scotch Collie landrace.|
|St. John's water dog||
|Served as the foundational stock for a number of purpose-bred dogs, such as the |
Some standardized breeds that are derived from landraces include the Dutch Landrace, Swedish Landrace and Finnish Landrace goats. The Danish Landrace is a modern mix of three different breeds, one of which was a "Landrace"-named breed.
British primitive goat
|British Isles||Dates to the |
Neolithic eraand possibly has existed as feral herds continuously since that time.
|Icelandic goat||Iceland||Can be dated to the Icelandic Age of Settlement and the population is presumed to have been genetically isolated for nearly the entirety of that time period|
|Spanish goat||Spain||This landrace survives in larger numbers in the American South as the "brush goat" or "scrub goat", among other names than in Spain.|
Shetland Isles, Scotland
|Norway||Dates to the Iron Age|
Welsh mountain sheep
This section needs expansion with: donkeys. You can help by adding to it. (August 2014)
The wild progenitor of the domestic horse is extinct. It is rare for landraces among domestic horses to remain isolated, due to human use of horses for transportation, thus causing horses to move from one local population to another.
The heavy 'draft' type of domestic horse, developed in Europe, has differentiated into many separate landraces or breeds. Examples of horse landraces also include insular poulations in Greece and Indonesia, and, on a broader scale, New World populations derived from the founder stock of Colonial Spanish horse.
Shetland Isles, Scotland
|Norway||Dates to the Iron Age|
Welsh mountain sheep
This section needs expansion with: More examples. You can help by adding to it. (August 2014)
The standardized swine breeds named "Landrace" are often not actually landraces or derived from landraces. The
|Baudin pig||Kangaroo Island, South Australia||Once a feral landrace, it is now extinct in the wild.|
|The Mulefoot pig originated as a landrace, but has been standardized since the early 1900s.|
Swedish flower hen
|Danish landrace duck||Denmark||The modern Danish landrace duck is noted to be somewhat inbred.|
Swedish Blue duck
|Sweden||A modern breed of the same name is derived from the landrace.|
Many standardized goose breeds named "Landrace", e.g. the
|Danish landrace goose||Denmark|
|Pilgrim goose||New England||This landrace is associated with the |
Mayflower Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony, and has also been standardised as a formal breed since 1939. It is thought to descend from western European stock dating of the 17th century.
|Gotland rabbit||Gotland||This landrace is subject to conservation efforts.|
|Mellerud rabbit||Sweden||This landrace is subject to conservation efforts.|
- PMID 30086128.
- ^ ISBN 978-0-85199-429-1. Retrieved September 28, 2014.
- ISSN 1810-0708.
- ^ S2CID 86662605. Archived from the original on 2008-05-14. Retrieved August 6, 2014. The copy at this URL is missing the author information but provides full text otherwise; that information is available in this official online abstract.
- ^ S2CID 5234510.
- ^ ISSN 1810-0708.
- ^ S2CID 20631394. Abstract and first two pages are available for free access.
- ^ a b Breton Olson, Meryl; Morris, Katlyn S.; Méndez, V. Ernesto (2012). "Cultivation of Maize Landraces by Small-scale Shade Coffee Farmers in Western El Salvador" (PDF). Agricultural Systems (111): 63–74.
- ^ Internationale Weiterbildung und Entwicklung. Archived from the originalon 2011-09-27. Retrieved August 6, 2014.
- ^ Waterford, Ireland: National Biodiversity Data Centre. 2012. Archived from the originalon 2014-01-02. Retrieved August 7, 2014.
- ^ a b c d e f Harlan, J. R. (1975). Crops and Man. Madison, Wisconsin: American Society of Agronomy and Crop Science Society of America.[page needed]
- ^ ISBN 978-92-9043-444-3.
- S2CID 24239918.
- ^ a b "Landrace". Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House. 2014. Retrieved August 5, 2014. Based on the Random House Dictionary.
- ISBN 9781887316071.
- British Pig Association. 2014. Archived from the originalon 20 November 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2014.
- ^ CAB International(CABI). pp. 89–116.
- ^ "Section B. Landraces: B.1. Introduction" (PDF). Resource Book for the Preparation of National Plans for Conservation of Crop Wild Relatives and Landraces. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. 2014. Retrieved August 6, 2014.[permanent dead link]
- ISBN 9781603423908.
- United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). April 2014. Archived from the originalon 2014-10-06. Retrieved 2014-10-03.
- ^ S2CID 216486179.
- ^ S2CID 244432667.
- ISBN 978-1898298724.[page needed]
- ^ S2CID 41869355.
- ^ S2CID 238580339.
- ^ Coyne, Dermot; Reiser, J. M.; Sutton, Lisa; Graham, Alice (1995-01-01). "'Lakota' Winter Squash, A Cultivar Derived from Native American Sources in Nebraska". Agronomy & Horticulture.
- PMID 30410497.
- PMID 29497433.
- ^ ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-12-26.
- ^ "The Queen of Tomatillos: Reina de Malinalco". Masa Americana. 2022-07-25. Retrieved 2022-12-26.
- S2CID 231832089.
- ^ Plant Inventory No. 168. United States Department of Agriculture. 1967.
- ISBN 978-0-8214-4462-7.
- JSTOR 2446379.
- ^ "Seminole Pumpkin". ECHOcommunity. Retrieved 2022-12-26.
- ^ a b "The Landrace Chiles of Northern New Mexico". New Mexico State University. Retrieved 2022-12-26.
- ^ PMID 27242865.
- ^ "Florida Cracker and Pineywoods Cattle". Hobby Farms. 2012. Archived from the original on March 5, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2012.
- ^ PMID 20626845.
- ^ PMID 19603063.
- PMID 15223036. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- ^ Juha Kantanen (30 December 2009): ″Article of the month – The Yakutian cattle: A cow of the permafrost.″ Archived 2020-03-10 at the Wayback Machine GlobalDiv Newsletter, 2009, issue no. 12, pp. 3–6. 1 picture. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- ^ genomic-resources ENAC (14 August 2012): ″Success case study – Yakutian Cattle in the land of permafrost.″ 1 picture. Retrieved 30 June 2013.
- ISBN 9780124055087. Retrieved August 13, 2014.
- ^ a b Dohner, Jan (December 6, 2013). "Choosing a Livestock Guard Dog Breed, Part Two". Mother Earth News. Archived from the original on 2014-08-14. Retrieved August 13, 2014.
- ^ a b Ward, Andy. "Landrace vs. Purebred Scotch Collies". Old-Time Farm Shepherd: Dedicated to Bringing Back the Old Scotch Collie of Yesterday. Old-time Scotch Collie Association.
- Stockholm, Sweden: KTH Royal Institute of Technology. Retrieved July 10, 2013.
- ISBN 978-0-8061-2753-8, retrieved 2009-04-20
- ^ "Den danske landand [The Danish landrace duck]" (in Danish). Foreningen gamle danske husdyrracer. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
- ISBN 9781933392899. Retrieved 7 August 2014.