News story | Date: 22/06/2021 | Ministry of Agriculture and Food
Genetic diversity is the foundation of agriculture. It enables crops to adapt to different growing conditions, breeding of strong and healthy farm animals and our forests to cope with climate change. The overall goal of this national strategy is to secure the gene pool for future agriculture and food production.
The implementation of the strategy is Norway's main instrument to achive SDG Target 2.5 on the maintainance of genetic diversity genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants, farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species.
No country is self-sufficient when it comes to genetic resources. Norway plays an active role in international cooperation and is committed to the conservation of its unique genetic resources. Important measures on the way to achieving the overall goal are:
- Strengthen cooperation on genetic resources between the Nordic countries via the Nordic Council of Ministers and by working closely with NordGen.
- Continue to participate in European cooperation on forest, livestock and crop genetic resources.
- Continue to participate in international cooperation on genetic resources, with an emphasis on access and benefit sharing and Farmers’ Rights.
- Increase the share of major food and forage crops whose seeds are stored at the Svalbard Global Seed Vault.
Norway has taken on a special global responsibility by establishing and operating the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which provides backup storage for seeds from gene banks across the globe. Currently, 1,081,026 seed samples from 87 gene banks are stored in the Seed Vault.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Food launched the national strategy for the conservation and sustainable use of genetic resources for food and agriculture in December 2019.