Definition of landrace in US English:



  • A local cultivar or animal breed that has been improved by traditional agricultural methods.

    • ‘Two individuals were included from broiler sire line B, brown-egg-layer line D, broiler dam line D, Icelandic landrace, and captive red jungle fowl G. g. gallus.’
    • ‘The most recent history of durum wheat has been marked by modern genetic improvement, involving the replacement of landraces by inbred varieties and the introduction of dwarfing genes (second part of the 20th century).’
    • ‘These landraces will survive only as long as the farmers who cultivate them do.’
    • ‘In some cases these admixed individuals are likely to be the result of modern breeding; in other cases they may be landraces belonging to groups that were underrepresented in our sample.’
    • ‘Because of maternal inheritance of chloroplasts, we attempted, when possible, to use landraces and cultivars derived from selections to avoid loss of chloroplast information from hybridization events.’
    • ‘For example, Mexicans are watching their traditional maize versions, or landraces, to see whether they'll pick up genes from the abundant U.S. crops of transgenic corn.’
    • ‘In oat, BEER et al. found associations between markers and 13 quantitative traits in a set of 64 landraces and cultivars.’
    • ‘Over centuries, small farmers have carefully bred and preserved thousands of different traditional varieties of corn, called landraces, which are specific to each geographical region, soil type, and micro-climate of the country.’
    • ‘‘Barbela’ is a collective name for a Portuguese wheat landrace that has been referred to in the literature for more than one century, and at least four morphological variants have been described.’
    • ‘The additional time they gain allows farmers to use their knowledge of cultivation practices, their soils, and landraces on which these measures are based, to capacity.’
    • ‘Most of the multiple alleles were found as rare mutants not in a collection but in landraces from Hokkaido island (the northernmost area of rice cultivation in Japan).’
    • ‘Farmers select the most appropriate landrace for soil and rainfall conditions at a particular point in time.’


1930s: from Danish.