Biotech Updates

Svalbard Global Seed Vault Receives Big Seed Deposit from 35 Genebanks

February 26, 2020

Head of partners to the Seed Vault and SDG Group. Photo Source: NordGren

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault in Norway has received seed deposits from 35 genebanks from all continents at a deposit event hosted by Norwegian Prime Minister and co-chair of the UN group of SDG Advocates, Erna Solberg on February 25, 2020. The seeds came from 35 international and regional genebanks, as well as national institutions and civil society organizations. This brings the total number of seed samples stored in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault to more than one million, and the total number of depositors to 85.

Among them were first-time depositors Cherokee Nation (USA), the University of Haifa (Israel), Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (Morocco), the Julius Kühn Institute (Germany), the Lebanese Agricultural Research Institute, the Baekdudaegan National Arboretum (South Korea), Suceava Genebank ‘Mihai Cristea' (Romania), and Kew Gardens (UK).

"This deposit event is especially timely, given that 2020 is the deadline for meeting target 2.5 of SDG 2 on zero hunger, which calls on the international community to safeguard the genetic diversity of crops and livestock," said Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg. The deposit event was the largest since the Seed Vault's opening in 2008 and the first major deposit since the completion of a technical upgrade in 2019. The seeds deposited included includes common staple crops and a large variety of vegetables, herbs, and their less-used wild relatives.

For more details, read the news release from The Crop Trust.

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