Annual Report 2015

“The Crop Trust is fortunate to have support from across the world.” Marie Haga
Executive Director of the Crop Trust

Key figures

The Crop Trust Seed Vault

Crop Varieties sent from the Svalbard Global Seed Vault to Morocco and Lebanon38,073

Varieties available

Varieties available 572,425

Crop Varieties Available in International Collections

Grant Expenditure Provided for Conservation USD 28.4M

Grant Expenditure Provided to Conserve Crop Diversity Globally
USD 28.4M
Training for collecting

Collecting Guides Developed14

Country Specific Collecting Guides for Crop Wild Relatives Developed
Countries receiving variety samples

Countries receiving samples 114

Number of countries receiving samples from Crop Trust supported collections
Variety records added

Grant Expenditure Provided for Gap Filling USD 1.375M

Grant Expenditure provided in support of collecting and conserving crop wild relatives (including capacity building)
USD 1.375M


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Walter Fust

"Crop diversity is one of the defining issues of our times."
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Marie Haga

"The global system we are building together is all at once inspiring, exciting, and absolutely essential."

What we do Pt. 1

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Global Genebank Partnership

"It is both individual and collective genebank efforts that are bringing crop conservation into the twenty-first century."
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Crop Wild Relatives

"An ambitious idea to adapt agriculture has become a reality."
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Svalbard Global Seed Vault

"The Seed Vault made history in 2015 with the first ever seed retrieval."

What we do Pt. 2

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Information Systems

"Managing data within the walls of a genebank, and sharing that data with the world, are two different, but not isolated, challenges."
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Quality Management Systems

"You set new goals as time goes by, so you are on a constant, steady course of improvement."
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Global Strategies

"Building a global system for conservation requires strategic thinking."

The Crop Trust

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"You set new goals as time goes by, so you are on a constant, steady course of improvement."
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Human resources

Being small in number, we depend on the exceptional competence and commitment of our staff.
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"All our governance activities were organized with a dedication to keeping the Crop Trust’s decision-making open."

Take action

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Take action

"A world that loses diversity, loses options for the future."
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Spreading The Message

"Why is it so important to safeguard crop diversity?"
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Thank you

"We often say that we are a small organization with a big job. We don’t mean it as a complaint; that is how we always planned it to be. It means that we don’t need a lot of support, but our mission does."


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Financial Statement

Grants to conserve crop diversity world wide increased in 2015
USD 25.1 Million
USD 28.4 Million


Crop Trust

Securing our food, forever

The Crop Trust is fortunate to have support from across the world all dedicated to the future of food security, agriculture and biodiversity.

The Crop Trust would like to thank the following people for their support for this year’s annual report: Ambassador Walter Fust, Sir Peter Crane, The Crop Trust Staff, the Genebank Managers of the CGIAR, Paul Cox, Epic Agency, Getty Images Reportage.

Platz der Vereinten Nationen 7
53113 Bonn, Germany

Highlights of the year


The Crop Trust

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The Crop Trust:

Events in 2015

The events we organized this year combined the celebration of crop diversity with the instigation of new efforts to secure and better understand it.

First came an exhibition of photos at the European Parliament in Brussels, which used powerful images captured around the world to show European decision-makers the urgent need to protect crop diversity. The exhibition was co-hosted by MEP Pavel Poc, Vice Chair of the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, and a passionate ecologist who has often advocated for the Crop Trust’s work.

In partnership with Slow Food USA, we hosted Plating the Planet, our first fundraising dinner, in New York City in April. This was an excellent (and delicious) experience in reaching out to new collaborators in new ways. The dinner proved to us that people who care strongly about food also care strongly about agricultural diversity, and are natural, committed partners for the global system of conservation.

We participated in the UN Financing for Development conference in Addis Ababa in July. At a side event to this historic global gathering, we presented an innovative new financing mechanism developed by Deutsche Bank, called the Investment Sharing Facility. This concept drew substantial attention from the representatives of governments and international organizations in attendance.

August brought bean scientists from far and wide to Bonn for the kick-off meeting of the BEAN_ADAPT project. This European Collaborative Research Project aims to identify the genes in bean plants that allowed this New World crop to adapt to different environments around Europe. With the Crop Trust playing host to more than 20 representatives of collaborating organizations, we were happy as always to offer like-minded researchers a welcoming environment and to strengthen relationships in support of this important scientific undertaking.

“It’s very symbolic at this moment to have here farmers and scientists together. We are bringing the seeds that were preserved by them – that’s what farmers have done for thousands of years – and bringing them to a safe place.” –José Graziano da Silva, Svalbard, 27 August 2015

While some events were just the beginning, others marked the end of a long journey. Later in August, other collaborators got together in a very remote part of Europe to deposit seeds in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The visitors included José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), along with scientists from Peru, Costa Rica and Norway, and Walter Quispe Huillca, Ricardo Pacco Chipa and Brisayda Sicus Palomino, three farmer conservationists from Peru’s Potato Park.

In November, the CGIAR Fund Council in Washington DC joined the Crop Trust in organizing a pre-pledging workshop. This was an energetic lead-up to the Pledging Conference in 2016 and marked the start of a joint effort to mobilize the needed resources.

Finally, late in November, British experts came together at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew for a one-day symposium on the role of crop diversity and crop wild relatives in building more sustainable and resilient food systems. As joint managers of the ten-year project Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change: Collecting, Protecting and Preparing Crop Wild Relatives, the Crop Trust and Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank hosted this meeting of minds to inform researchers on the key role of wild diversity in readying crops for the future. After the symposium, Marie Haga spoke at the UK Parliament to bring this message to policymakers. These efforts formed an important lead-up to the Paris Climate Conference the following month, which brought a year of major international decisions and developments to an optimistic conclusion.

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