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



Close the topic

Letter from the Executive Director

Looking back, it’s hard to believe just how much there was to get done this year. But I will remember it as a year spent among friends, partners and new acquaintances who are doing some of the most important work in agriculture, and I can’t think of a better way to spend a year than that.

What’s more, every bit of the hard work led to something. The sound administrative and financial management of our partner genebanks got sounder. The Crop Wild Relatives project reached its peak with a full program of action across some 30 countries. Genesys, the global portal to information about crop collections, got more powerful and easier to use. Around the world, enthusiasm swelled about the importance of crop diversity and the need for a global effort to safeguard it, share it and use it.

We are particularly pleased that the governments of the world recognize that the urgent need to conserve and use crop diversity is a necessity to achieve United Nations Development Goal 2 to “end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture.” Target 2.5 reads:

“By 2020 maintain genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants, farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species, including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at national, regional and international levels…”

This year’s deposits to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault were filled with hope for the future. New deposits of seeds were received from Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Finland, Norway and the United States of America, in addition to further deposits from the international genebanks. We also witnessed a personal delivery by indigenous representatives of the Potato Park in Peru of 750 seed samples they had produced from their own incredibly diverse living collections. The Crop Trust has been charged with ensuring that this legacy is maintained forever, come what may – not just for the farmers of Peru’s Sacred Valley, but for all of us.

Events this year made it clear that the Svalbard Global Seed Vault is an invaluable part of that promise. Before we even marked its tenth anniversary, the Vault saw its first-ever retrieval – of material from the genebank of the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) in Aleppo, Syria. This was a sobering reminder of the real-world dangers that can potentially undo decades of conservation work, but the good news is that ICARDA’s work has not been, and will not be, undone. Seeing those seeds sprout again will be an occasion for joy.

All of this would be lonely (if not impossible) work on our own, but we are never alone in it. As we prepared the groundwork for our April 2016 Pledging Conference, we were reminded many times over of how many supporters and collaborators share our mission.

This was evidenced in an open letter of support from the CGIAR Consortium to the donor community urging funding of the Crop Trust Endowment. It was echoed in op-eds written by esteemed advocates like the World Food Prize winner M.S. Swaminathan and Dr. Mahmoud Solh, Director General of ICARDA. And it was proved, to our great honor, by His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales, who this year became our Global Patron.

Doing what’s necessary isn’t always a way to make friends. For us, fortunately, it has been. From Walter Quispe Huillca, Ricardo Pacco Chipa and Brisayda Sicus Palomino, the farmers of the Sacred Valley of Peru, to The Prince of Wales, in 2015 our partners left us with no doubt that the work we do, and the global system we are building together, is all at once inspiring, exciting, and absolutely essential.



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