New seeds from New Zealand and Canada were added to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault holdings this week; 484 accessions of forage species from Margot Forde Germplasm Centre in NZ and 2229 cereal samples from Plant Gene Resources of Canada.
Seeds from far east and far west to be brought into the Svalbard Global Seed Vault by coordinator Åsmund Asdal this week.
Ten seed boxes from, Canada and New Zealand respectively, containing 2713 seed samples, were deposited in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault on the 8th of May.
On May 1, 2017, Plant Gene Resources of Canada (PGRC) shipped its fifth seed deposit to the Seed Vault, and already one week later the 2229 envelopes with seeds from the PGRC genebank collection were in place for security back-up storage at the Svalbard Global Seed Vault.
The nine boxes shipped from PGRC in May 2017 contain: 2155 accessions of bread wheat and durum wheat, 73 accessions of triticale and one accession of rye. The last shipment from Canada to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault was sent in 2013. In total, PGRC has now more than 28,000 seed accessions deposited in Svalbard.
This week was the second seed deposit from Agresearch Margot Forde Germplasm Centre, Palmerston North in New Zealand. Last May representatives from the Centre visited Svalbard themselves and brought 726 seed samples for security storage in the Seed Vault. This was the start of a multiyear program with annual seed deposits to the Seed Vault.
Now, a year later, 484 accessions of mainly Trifolium, Lolium and Festuca forage species were deposited, bringing the New Zealand back-up in the Vault to a total number of 1210 seed samples. The Margot Forde Germplasm Centre holds major collections of approximately 2200 crop species and their relatives and is hoping that about ten percent of the total collection is backed up in Svalbard by year seven or eight in the project. More information at AgResearch webpage
Updated details about the total holdings of the Seed Vault can be seen at the Seed Portal webpage. The next Seed Vault opening for further seed deposits is scheduled for mid October.