In this CIP@50 feature story, we explore how the G+ tools are helping breeders develop crop varieties that meet the needs of both men and women across the food system. The goal? Gender-equitable food systems, improved nutrition security, and inclusive growth for millions of families around the world.
In this famous optical illusion, some people see a rabbit, while others see a duck. Similarly, when it comes to new crop varieties, users see them in different ways. Farmers want higher yields while consumers want better taste. The list of perspectives is long, and even longer when you take gender differences into account.
“Men and women often have different ideas about what matters most in a crop variety depending on their relationship to it. Men are likely to value it in terms of market-related traits like yield or shelf-life while women are likely to look for food security traits such as early maturity or taste. They will also consider practical qualities which affect them like the ease of cooking or processing, a role which falls heavily on women and can add hours to already-large work burdens,” says Vivian Polar, Gender and Innovation Senior Specialist, International Potato Center (CIP).