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Impact Report

Thank you to supporters in our community that make it possible to care for the Seed Savers Exchange collection and connect people through seeds, plants, and stories. Seed Savers Exchange is committed to putting every dollar donated to our nonprofit mission to the best and most effective use.

Arial photo of Heritage Farm gardens, and two buildings.

Financial support for our nonprofit work at Seed Savers Exchange helps to move our mission forward, preserve and share seeds, and maintain our Heritage Farm headquarters, where we grow out seeds for evaluation and preservation, raise heritage livestock breeds, and welcome visitors each year.

In 2023, 66.4% of our spending went directly to programs and 4.54% to maintaining Heritage Farm.


Seed Savers Exchange stewards America’s culturally diverse and endangered garden and food crop legacy for present and future generations. We educate and connect people through collecting, regenerating, and sharing heirloom seeds, plants, and stories.


Culturally diverse food crops and gardens, community-based preservation, resilience, and community activism are at the heart of Seed Savers Exchange’s work. An unwavering commitment to our mission builds continued stewardship and resilience, protecting biodiversity and shaping the future of foodways.
In the face of ongoing threats of climate change and environmental degradation, you can help take action. Work preserving open-pollinated crops and promoting decentralized seed-saving practices represents a critical response to these challenges. Together, by preserving endangered food crops and fostering community-based stewardship, cultivate the foundation for the heirlooms of tomorrow—regionally adapted varieties capable of withstanding changing environmental conditions.

As custodians and storytellers of this diverse legacy, we hold a profound responsibility to ensure its continuity and relevance in a rapidly changing world. Together, we stand at the forefront of a new era, where the seeds of the past are the key to a sustainable future and a legacy of abundance for generations to come.

 

A Record Year for Seed Donations

In 2023, Seed Savers Exchange donated a record 63,650 packets of seed to more than 600 community gardens through the Herman’s Garden and Disaster Relief programs. These seeds empowered communities, connecting them with real food, experiential learning, and heirloom varieties for seed saving.

Testimonials

“With your help, we were able to launch our program with great success—providing seeds to over 200 local gardeners.” —Patricia K.-M.

“I could not believe how many different varieties of great seeds you included! From arugula to watermelon and everything in between, this donation is so appreciated.” —Maureen G.

“We are so excited to be able to share seeds for vegetables folks may not be familiar with like sunberry and Silver Bell squash as well as staples like the beets, tomatoes, and broccoli.” —Arden M.

Photo from Herman’s Garden recipient, the Kaleo Foundation.
Photo from Herman’s Garden recipient, Ella Johnson Memorial Public Library District.

Measuring Availability of Biodiversity Through the Seed Trade Census

Seed Trade Census cover image of three beet varieties to highlight biodiversity.The year 2023 saw the publication of the 2020 Seed Trade Census, a research publication that provides a snapshot of vendors and open-pollinated vegetable varieties that existed in the United States seed trade in 2020.

The latest Seed Trade Census contains data collected in 2020 from seed company websites and catalogs representing 18,142 unique varieties of edible food crops sold by 399 wholesale and retail seed companies—an increase from the last census, conducted in 2015, which listed 12,892 varieties and 257 vendors. Of the varieties available in 2020, 56% were offered by only one source, with only 14% being offered by more than five sources.

This publication can help gardeners and growers locate unique open-pollinated varieties available in their region, plant breeders identify open-pollinated breeding material, farmers capture market trends, and chefs and others discover the diversity of form and flavor in rare vegetable varieties. It’s an invaluable resource for anyone who cares about preserving the rich diversity of varieties cultivated in the United States.

Find additional information including financial information and recognition, membership highlights, and more in the 2023 Impact Report, PDF Version.