Global seed vault

World's largest collection of seeds


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NO Norway

In development

About the project Edit

Built in 2008 in the permafrost in the mountains of Svalbard, Norway, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault is designed to store duplicates of seeds from seed collections around the globe. Many of these collections are in developing countries. If seeds are lost, e.g. as a result of natural disasters, war or simply a lack of resources, the seed collections may be reestablished using seeds from Svalbard. The seed vault is managed under terms spelled out in a tripartite agreement between the Norwegian government, the Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT) and the Nordic Genetic Resource Center. Construction of the seed vault, which cost approximately 45 million Norwegian Kroner (9 million USD) was funded entirely by the Government of Norway. Storage of seeds in the seed vault is free of charge.

The Seed Vault has the capacity to store 4,5 million different seed samples. Each sample will contain on average 500 seeds, so a maximum of 2,25 billion seeds may be stored in the Seed Vault. The Seed Vault will therefore have the capacity to hold all the unique seed samples that are conserved today by all the approximately 1400 genebanks that are found in more than 100 countries all over the world. In addition the Seed Vault will have capacity to also store many new seed samples that may be collected in the future.

In what ways is this project unique and creative? Edit

When in full use, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault will represent the world’s largest collection of seeds.

What is the social value of this project? Edit

Ensuring that the genetic diversity of the world’s food crops is preserved for future generations is an important contribution toward the reduction of hunger and poverty in developing countries.

What is the potential of this project to expand and develop? Edit

What was the triggering factor of this project? Edit

What is the business model of this project? Edit

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