Agrobiodiversity' key to agricultural productivity
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California's rich agricultural productivity is founded on its biological diversity, both native and exotic. Native species contribute genetic resources and play a vital part in preserving land, air and water quality. Exotic species introduced from around the globe provide the raw genetic material for nearly all of California's agricultural commodities. Through generations of selective breeding, native and exotic biodiversity have been used to solve agricultural problems. Such biodiversity -- termed "agrobiodiversity" -- includes not only crops, livestock and their wild relatives, but the species that interact with and support them: pollinators, symbionts, competitors, pests, parasites, predators and biological control agents. Long-term security and flexibility of California agricultural production requires conservation of both exotic genetic resources and native California habitats.