In the News

The Vault for Global Food Security

Sayanti Sengupta | seventeen goals Magazine

The world population has been growing by leaps and bounds. How do we then ensure food security for all in the face of climate extremes and crop failures? The answer lies in plant seeds- and the reason why they deserve to be saved in a safe.

A three hours flight north of Oslo will take you to an inhospitable, cold, distant spot on the earth where even in July, temperatures are less than six degrees. Here lies Longyearbyen, the administrative centre of the Spitsbergen archipelago (Norwegian: Svalbard), belonging to Norway. Nearly 2,000 people live in this small town lying between the sea and snow-covered mountains. From one of the mountain slopes, a huge concrete block protrudes, equipped with an explosion-proof steel door. The perfect background in a James Bond film. Welcome to the best protected vault in the world: the Global Seed Bank of the Crop Trust.

 

The 150 meters long tunnel leading to the Vault Chambers of the Global Seed Vault.
Photo: Svalbard Global Seed Vault/Riccardo Gangale

 

Foundation fund for crop diversity

The seed vault is owned by the Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food and was established as a service to the world community. It is managed by the Global Crop Diversity Trust. The mission of the Crop Trust is to conserve global biodiversity and preserve as much genetic material as possible.

A major task to which Dr. Stefan Schmitz has dedicated himself since the beginning of 2020 as Executive Director of the fund. Food security and the conservation of plant genetic resources have long been at the heart of his work.  Previously, he was Deputy Director General and Commissioner for the initiative “One World – No Hunger” at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), where he headed BMZ’s work in the areas of food security, agriculture and rural development for more than 10 years.

“If we lose crop diversity, our food systems become less resistant to environmental and other shocks. Strengthening our food systems will not be easy,” said the geo-scientist.

 

Read the full article here.

 

News

Filter by
  • News
  • Social
Blog

Let’s Meet Up for Tea

Read More
Blog

A New Decade for Biodiversity Protection

Read More
Blog

African Genebanks Move from Strength to Strength

Read More
Blog

Crop Trust-Led Panel on Pre-Breeding at GLF Biodiversity Conference

Read More
Blog

Crop Trust Dialogue on Genebanks at GLF Biodiversity Conference

Read More
Blog

Biodiversity for Resilience Video Series

Read More
Blog

A Year Like No Other

Read More
Blog

US Crop Wild Relatives Desperately Need Conserving

Read More
Science Blog

Hope for Multilateralism Yet

Read More
Blog

Crop Trust a Finalist for Food Planet Prize

Read More
Blog

Kenyan Farmers Can Bank on Tree Seeds

Read More
Blog

From COVID-19 to Biodiversity Loss: All Global Challenges Are Connected

Read More
Spotlight

Connecting Genebanks, Economics and Careers

Read More
Blog

An International Rescue Mission from Syria to Svalbard

Read More