The in-trust germplasm collections hosted by the 11 genebanks of the CGIAR Centres contain more than 650,000 samples of plant genetic resources of crops, forages and agroforestry species. Within the terms of their agreements with the International Treaty on plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA), the Centres are responsible for ensuring that the collections are properly conserved in the public domain, and accessible to users in accordance with the Treaty's Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-sharing. Knowledge and information on the in-trust collections is an important element of their global public goods (GPG) status. The GPG Project, implemented under the aegis of SGRP, is a comprehensive programme of work to upgrade the CGIAR Centre genebanks and the standards of management of the collections to ensure efficiently and sustainably into the future, and facilitate access by users. Moreover, the Project positions the Centres to play a leading role in building a comprehensive global system for conserving, managing and exchanging PGRFA.
All 11 Centres hosting genebanks participated in Phase 1. The achievements were improved storage, seed processing, regeneration, plant health and molecular identification facilities, safety duplication of 190,000 accessions, reduced backlogs of processing, regeneration and plant health, characterization of over 80,000 accessions, hardware and software upgrades and enhanced SINGER functionality, and data quality improved. The Project external review recommended a second phase to complete the measures to secure the CGIAR in-trust collections, and position the CGIAR to undertake a leading role in designing and implementing a crop-based global conservation and use system. Read more here.
The Project’s second phase builds on the collaborative effort that made Phase 1 so successful. The proposal “Collective Action for the Rehabilitation of Global Public Goods in the CGIAR Genetic Resources System: Phase 2” was submitted to the World Bank which, in September 2006, approved funding of US$10.46 million. Phase 2 is being implemented over a 3 year period starting in January 2007. The overall scope of Phase 2 will be broader than Phase 1, with projected outputs covering a number of strategic areas. Thus, the Project will include strategic planning for training national programme partners, and for enhancing the CGIAR’s capacity for genetic resources research. With a view to optimizing the CGIAR Centres’ contributions to work on the breadth of agrobiodiversity, scoping studies will be carried out on genetic and genomic collections, microbial, fungal, insect and nematode collections, and underutilized plant species. Finally, the Project will analyse the elements and functions of an integrated global system for crop genetic resources conservation and use. It will promote such a system, with the CGIAR genebanks at the core and the CGIAR providing leadership, vision and skills to realise that vision. Read more here