Vegetables gene bank

Worldwide the estimated number of ex situ maintained accessions is ca. 7.4 million held by ca. 1750 collectionholders. Around twelve percent of these accessions are vegetables. In the Netherlands vegetable breeding is of significant importance and the total CGN collection of around 24.000 accessions exists for ca. 47% of vegetable accessions.

CGN has the ambition to focus more specifically on vegetable genetic resources as a specific contribution to international efforts in the area of the conservation of plant genetic resources. CGN will focus on vegetables which are cultivated and consumed in Europe. The new strategy of CGN is based on the observation that CGIAR institutes maintain large collections of arable crops, and conserve almost no vegetable collections as is also the case with most European genebanks.

At the same time the Dutch breeding industry is one of the largest international players and depends for it genetic resources for a large part on the CGN collections. Already in the first executive agreement between the  Ministry of LNV and CGN this development was anticipated upon by foucssing on eight prioritycrops amongst which six vegetable crops. The new strategy not only allows more internal focussing, but also better external profiling.


A more focussed contribution to international efforts towards the maintenance of genebank collections by focussing on vegetable crops.

In 2010 the project will focus on:

  • an inventroy of the long term prospect of originally Dutch collection currently maintained elsewhere and the necessity of repatriation and
  • a first step towards a worldwide inventory of minor vegetables.


  • Report/publication on an inventory of the long term prospect of originally Dutch collections presently maintained at foreign genebanks and the need for repatriation.
  • A worldwide inventory of selected minor vegetable crops.