Sustainable Development Goals

Indicator 2.5.1.b - Number of animal genetic resources for food and agriculture secured in medium or long term conservation facilities

The conservation of animal genetic resources for food and agriculture in medium or long term conservation facilities (ex situ in genebanks) represents the most trusted means of conserving genetic resources worldwide. This indicator will measure progress towards target 2.5.

Target 2.5

By 2020, maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species, including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at the national, regional and international levels, and promote access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, as internationally agreed.


The measure of trends in ex situ conserved materials provides an overall assessment of the extent to which we are managing to maintain and/or increase the total genetic diversity available for future use and thus protect it from any permanent loss of genetic diversity which may occur on-farm and in the natural habitat. 

This information is key to support the livelihood of the world's population with sufficient, diverse and nutritious diets long into the future. 

Key results

For animal breeds, under-reporting hinders interpretation of information regarding inventories of genebanks on global level. Out of a total of 7 760 local breeds (including extinct ones), only for 258 breeds some genetic material is reported to be stored, while sufficient material, allowing to reconstitute the breed in case of extinction, is reported for 79 other breeds. In 2019, for four percent of local breeds in Western Europe, sufficient genetic material for reconstitution is reported. On-going efforts to preserve animal genetic resources appear inadequate given the unprecedented threat posed to their diversity by increasingly rapid environmental and social changes.

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