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The Long Term Housing, Maintenance and Scientific Curation of the National Fruit Collections - GC0147

This project brings together an expert team of academics and agronomists who are uniquely placed to deliver the maintenance and scientific curation of the National Fnuit Collections (NFC) at Brogdale to a standard commensurate with its international importance and in line with the UK's commitment to genetic resource conservation.

The project will bring together a robust program of maintenance for the collections with a rigorous program of scientific curation in an integrated approach. The collections will be maintained in a state of health in line with their international standing and with the need for their utilisation through the supply of material to a wide range of users as well as in line with their long term conservation. Along with a continued program of characterisation this will address a number of the UK's commitments to genetic resource agreements at both the national and international level.
The objectives of the project are to:
•To provide secure long term housing for the collections at Brogdale;
•To maintain the collections in a healthy state through a robust maintenance schedule and the managed cyclical repropagation of collections;
•To develop the accession and deaccession policy for the collections to enhance the utility of the collections as a genetic resource;
•To carry out a rigorous program of scientific curation, utilising molecular genetic markers in an integrated programme within the repropagation of the collections and to carry out further characterisation both at a morphological and phenological level;
•To further characterise the apple collections for traits relating to climate change through collaborative research to add further value to the curational work;
•To enhance the availability of the collections across a wide range of users through both the distribution of material, in line with the UK's international treaty commitments, and through the availability of data on the collections via an on-line database;
•To integrate the wider UK genetic resources where they are able to add further to the holdings of the physical collections at a virtual level, to develop a more co-ordinated approach to the UK's fruit genetic resource collections;
•To maintain a safety back-up of cryopreserved material, adding to the security of the collections;
•To integrate the NFC within the major genetic resource networks both within the UK, Europe and worldwide;
•To support the increased utilisation of the NFC through potential initiatives such as Agri-tech and through funding opportunities with the major research supporters;
•To enhance the public engagement of the NFC at Brogdale through collaboration with Brogdale Collections.

Together, these actions will act to ensure that the NFC continues to be internationally recognised as one of the major fnuit genetic resource collections. The collections will be managed in line with the UK's commitments but will also allow for the enhanced utilisation of the collections in support of research, breeding and training for food and agriculture as well as for the wider public good
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2014

To: 2019

Cost: £1,907,529
Contractor / Funded Organisations
University of Reading