CIAT experts home in on endangered plants – to improve food production & climate change adaptation

11 January, 2011 by (comments)

CIAT’s Andy Jarvis – crop wild relatives by CIAT

CIAT scientists are pinpointing areas around the world for the collection of some of the world’s most important plant species.

The team will run computer models to determine the likely locations of endangered wild relatives of some of the world’s most important food crops like wheat, rice and beans. Collection teams will then be sent tothe areas to collect samples.

The work forms the basis of a new USD50 million project led by the Global Crop Diversity Trust, and funded by the Norwegian government to gather, catalogue and conserve crop wild relatives, and develop a crop breeding program to make use of beneficial traits. The initiative was formally announced last month. It is expected that Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew will lead collection teams around the world, and it is expected that many of the samples will be stored in the organisation’s Millennium Seed Bank.

Related links: CIAT prepares a shipment to be sent from its genebank in Colombia to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, in Norway.

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Filed Under: Climate Change, Crop diversity