Svalbard Global Seed Vault

Welcome to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault

Way up north, in the permafrost, 1300 kilometers beyond the Arctic Circle, is the world's largest secure seed storage, opened by the Norwegian Government in February 2008. From all across the globe, crates of seeds are sent here for safe and secure long-term storage in cold and dry rock vaults.

A global backstop

The vault hold the seeds of many tens of thousands of varieties of essential food crops such as beans, wheat and rice. In total, the vault now holds seeds of more than 4000 plant species. These seed samples are duplicates of seed sample stores in national, regional and international gene banks.

Svalbard Globale frøhvelv

Seeds remain depositors' property

The Seed Bank was established and is fully funded by the Norwegian government, with the responsibility for operations assigned to The Ministry of Agriculture and Food. The Ministry coordinates daily operation with the Nordic Gene Resource Centre and the Global Crop Diversity Trust, and receives guidance from a dedicated international council established to advise the Seed Bank.

Frøene pakkes i forseglede poser som legges i forseglede bokser og plasseres i høye hyllereoler inne i hvelvet.

More about the physical plant

What does it look like? How big is it? How cold is it? What does it look like inside? Who built it? Who is the architect? What is the theme of the artwork? Who is the artist?


The delegation from Peru and Costa Rica with State Secretary Hanne Maren Blaafjelldal and the Director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, Aaslaug Haga.

Potato seed deposit at Svalbard Global Seed Vault

2015-08-26 - Delegations from Peru and Costa Rica will deposit potato seeds at the Svalbard Global Seed Vault this week. State Secretary Hanne Maren Blaafjelldal participates at the seed deposit together with, among others, Costa Rica's Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, mr Arauz Cavallini, and the Director-General of FAO, mr José Graziano da Silva.

Forest seed destined for Svalbard

2015-02-26 - For the first time forest tree seeds are officially deposited and stored in the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The Norwegian Minister of Agriculture and Food, Sylvi Listhaug together with her Swedish and Danish colleagues Sven-Erik Bucht and Dan Jørgensen, carried the first boxes of Nordic forest tree seeds in to the vault today. This is an important contribution to the conservation of genetic resources.