2021, Turkey, 15', Dir. Derya Manaz, Turkish (English subtitles)
Modern industrial agriculture has transformed how the world eats – but not always for the better. The drawbacks of the system that governs how we raise our food are slowly becoming clear, as more and more people raise questions about a variety of problems, from the health of farmers and the health of our soil to the loss of biodiversity and the contributions of petroleum-based agriculture to global warming. When it comes to biodiversity, local seed movements are springing up all over the world to help ensure that heirloom varieties such as “karakılçık” wheat don’t become lost forever. In fact, there are over a dozen distinct varieties in Turkey that are known locally as “karakılçık”, or “black-awn”, after the long black needles that stick out from the wheat spikes. Derya Manaz’s short-short documentary tells the story of the rediscovery of a black-awned wheat at a local Seed Festival held in Seferhisar, Izmir in 2011 and the subsequent efforts to revitalize the variety.