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The establishment of an inventory for genetic resources for food and agriculture and scope a GFRA information system - GC0134

This project has the objective of gathering information for the purpose of obtaining an inventory of Genetic Resources in Food and Agriculture and providing recommendations on an information portal. The gathering of this data will involve the consultation of stakeholders but the seven month time frame of the project and the fact that the exercise is split between the three GFRA domains (animal, plant and microorganism) provides ample time to gather the information. A management framework will ensure that the data gathered will be drawn together to form the final report and recommendations in time for the 31 March 2004 deadline.

This objective is relevant to the Defra policy on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (GRFA). The policy is intended to support the implementation of international agreements concerning genetic resources to which the UK is a party, including the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Primarily, these require a strategic approach to the conservation and sustainable use of GRFA that is not currently possible because of the lack of baseline information on UK GRFA.

The objectives are to develop an inventory, scope an information system and recommend the next steps in providing support information in the conservation and utilisation of Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.
Objectives common to all GRFA domains
1. Consult with relevant UK, regional and international stakeholders in each GRFA domain to establish the extent to which inventory information is currently available, the mechanisms for access and how best the inventory could best meet their and the broader user communities needs.
2. Assess to what extent data are currently electronically available and what requires digitisation.
3. Assessment of the work currently being carried out through other initiatives on the co-ordination and access to biodiversity inventories and associated information.
4. Create a model inventory and define the extent of the associated information needed to facilitate its use.
5. Undertake ‘gap analysis’ of and report on taxonomic and genetic diversity for each GRFA domain as a means of ensuring its more effective conservation and use.
6. Seek input from the GRFA organism domain stakeholders on the design of an information system and its content that would add value to the inventory and information currently available and that would provide the services needed.
7. Design a model structure for the portal for the GFRA community.
8. Report on the feasibility, provide recommendations for the next steps to realise the inventory and information portal and provide, if applicable, an associated business plan.

Domain specific objectives
Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (AGRA1. Summarise the state of AGRFA in comparison to PGRFA and MGRFA

Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (PGRFA)
P1. Assess and collate data on obsolete cultivars, and breeding lines and genetic stocks in ex situ collections, either by links to collection web sites or UK EPGRIS Focal Point.
P2. Assess and collate data on currently extant land races and primitive forms.
P3. Assess and collate data on crop wild relative species in situ distribution across the UK and report on priority locations for the establishment of CWR genetic reserves within existing protected areas.
P4. Assess and collate data on utilised wild species by forming a link with the existing RBG Kew database.
Microorganisms Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (MGRFA)
M1. Defining the scope of the microorganisms (strains, pathovars, serotypes) and their replicable parts that should be included.
M2. Determine how existing databases of strains can be mined through the GRFA portal for relevant strains only
M3. Determine how the National Collection Network (UK National Culture Collection) can link to the many specialist collections containing MGRFA giving access to their collection content.
M4. Gap analysis for MGRFA in the UK

Project Documents
• Final Report : The Establishment of an inventory for Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and Scope a GRFA Information System: Fianl Summary Report   (347k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2003

To: 2004

Cost: £92,329
Contractor / Funded Organisations
CABI Bioscience, University - Birmingham, Roslin Institute, Edinburgh (BBSRC)
Plant Genetic Resources              
Plants and Animals              
Fields of Study
Plant Genetics