International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

International Treaty & DivSeek International to Collaborate on Global Flow of Plant Information


Rome, Italy, 06 June 2022FAO, on behalf of the International Treaty, and DivSeek International have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at improving the interoperability of information systems dealing with crop germplasm around the world.

“We look forward to working with DivSeek to further enhance the global exchange of germplasm information and promote benefit-sharing” said Kent Nnadozie, Secretary of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

The International Treaty’s Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-sharing (MLS), currently the largest global exchange mechanism of seeds and other planting material, makes it possible for farmers and plant breeders to access samples from around the world. This enables farmers to develop crop varieties suited to different climatic conditions. The Global Information System (GLIS) of the International Treaty complements the MLS with seed information and research data. It connects and augments existing systems, to create a global entry point for information and knowledge on the plants that feed the world.

DivSeek International is a global community that connects, combines and communicates expertise among stakeholders engaged in the management and characterization of plant genetic resources. It comprises leading researchers and practitioners from academic and research institutions, government agencies, and inter-governmental organizations around the world.

DivSeek’s extensive network of research institutions provides a platform to develop technical standards and disseminate  information, including on policy matters, which will benefit the FAO International Treaty,” said Emily Marden, the designated DivSeek Board Member for the partnership. 

“Our partnership with DivSeek, which was requested by our Governing Body, will not be limited to technical standards and tools. The International Treaty is ready to promote dialogue between scientists and policy-makers to further enhance the global systems that govern the production of food from plants and promote benefit-sharing with developing countries,” Secretary Nnadozie said. “I am pleased to note the DivSeek is partnering with developing country institutions and hope that such efforts will continue through this new partnership,” he added.

The partnership with DivSeek is expected to further enlarge the GLIS community and test new tools and solutions for advanced plant information systems. This will be done by identifying best practices, community standards and technical capabilities needed to manage large volumes of information and data.

“DivSeek is delighted at the prospect of working closely with the Treaty, so that scientific and technological advances may not only add intrinsic value to plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, but also be applied to developing best practices that encourage equitable access and benefit sharing,” said Graham King, Executive Director, DivSeek International Network Inc.

As part of this new partnership, DivSeek will be able to attend the Ninth Session of the Governing Body of the International Treaty and report on the progress being made through the partnership with the International Treaty. The Ninth Session of the Governing Body is scheduled to take place in 19-24 September 2022 in India.


#ItAllStartsWithTheSeed #GlobalInformation #BenefitSharing 

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