Dr. Wang Ren talked about the Three Challenges facing the Revitalization of China's Seed Industry | The Third Symposium on Conservation and Benefit Sharing of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture by CBCGDF was successfully Concluded in Beijing
2023/6/14 17:53:00 本站

Wild plant genetic resources for food and agriculture serve as the foundation for human survival, and their protection and sustainable use are crucial. In order to conserve and ensure the sustainable use of all plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, and to fairly and equitably share the benefits arising from their use, the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) and the Beijing Academy of Agriculture and Forestry Sciences jointly organized a symposium--- The Third Symposium on Conservation and Benefit Sharing of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture on May 23, 2023 in Beijing. This symposium was also the third symposium following the 2nd "Conservation and Benefit Sharing of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and Agricultural Biodiversity focusing on post-2020 Agricultural Biodiversity" held in July 2019. The symposium was live-streamed online and a total of 6,000 people participated online.


Dr. Wang Ren, researcher of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences and former Assistant Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, delivered the opening speech. It is particularly worth mentioning that Dr. Wang Ren made his speech in English in order to express the highest respect and honor to the guests present. The following is a summary of his speech:


It is a great honor to stand here and speak today! The point I want to make is that I am speaking only on behalf of myself. First of all, I would like to thank the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation, and the Beijing Academy of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences for co-organizing and hosting such a very meaningful and important event.


As we all know, China's top leaders attach great importance to the seed industry and the sustainable use of land conservation, pointing out that we should "solve the problem of seeds and arable land", and especially propose to strengthen the protection and utilization of germplasm resources, strengthen the construction of seed banks, and promote the industrial application of biological breeding in an orderly manner. The key to fighting for a good turnaround in the seed industry in China is to improve the level and efficiency of breeding work. At present, China's breeding institutions generally face three key problems: First, breeding parental materials are seriously homogenized, and the genetic background is narrow, and genetic resources and information cannot be shared between scientific research institutions and corporate breeders; Second, bound by conventional breeding means, the lack of high-throughput, high-efficiency, automated phenotype identification platform; Third, the lack of bioinformatics analysis and big data application capabilities.


As one of the important issues and important foundation for sustainable development, the conservation and utilization of biological genetic resources have received great attention in the world. Taking the conservation of agricultural germplasm resources as an example, the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) has fifteen international agricultural research centers worldwide, eleven of which have gene banks for agricultural germplasm resources. These include the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines, the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in Mexico, and others. At the initiative of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Global Crop Diversity Fund (GCDF) and CGIAR, the Norwegian government built the Global Seed Vault in Svalbard on the Arctic Circle in 2008, known as the "End of the World Seed Vault," which holds more than 600,000 seeds from the CGIAR seed vault and other national gene banks around the world. resources.


The first crop germplasm repository built in China is the China National Crop Germplasm Bank in Beijing, which was inaugurated in October 1986 at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, with a storage capacity of more than 400,000 crop resources in Phase I. The new National Germplasm Bank will be completed and enter into trial operation in 2022, with a storage capacity of 1.5 million copies. It is the largest and most advanced crop resource germplasm bank in the world.


In addition to the need to use new technologies for innovative research on high quality varieties, breeding parental materials are equally important. At present, there are many parental materials collected and preserved by related institutions, but fewer are shared and applied, resulting in "resource silos", which is a common problem faced by many breeding units and breeders at present. In order to break the silos of breeding resources, it is necessary to establish an effective mechanism to ensure that breeders have legal access to the required breeding materials, and to introduce a big data platform for genetic resources and a seed DNA bank. Compared with the open sharing of seed resources, digital genetic resources and DNA samples have the unique advantage of being quickly accessible for use. While safeguarding the rights of germplasm resources belonging in kind, the genetic information resources of data and DNA libraries can be used to make up for the insurmountable defects faced by the exchange and sharing of germplasm resources, such as long breeding time and insufficient quantity.


Establishing genetic database of crop genetic resources is as important as conserving seed resources, and even more valuable for application in the future. According to statistics, of the 287 crops listed by FAO, 185 have completed genome sequencing. International biological breeding has entered a new era based on genomics, phenomics and gene editing.


Digital Sequence Information on Genetic Resources (DSI), an agricultural genetic resource, has now become an important issue internationally.


From 2011 to 2014, the project of resequencing 3000 rice germplasm resources (published in "Nature", April 2018), led by Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAS) and jointly completed by UWI, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and Guangdong Academy of Agricultural Sciences (GAS), opened the international crop science field to use genome resequencing technology to It also revealed the importance of building genomics and big data platforms to achieve a new leap in breeding science. The project identified more than 32 million single nucleotide polymorphism loci (SNPs) and 12,000 full-length novel genes in rice. The data information from the three thousand rice re-sequences is publicly available as a public product on the IRRI and Shenzhen National Gene Bank websites, and has become one of the most used public databases in the crop science community worldwide.


I am very grateful to everyone here for all the efforts you have made for this. Some of you have come all the way across the mountains and rivers to China to attend this seminar on conservation and benefit sharing of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, which is very necessary and important despite its small size. I am eagerly looking forward to the experts' in-depth discussions on this topic, and I am very happy to learn from you.


Finally, I would like to express my sincere greetings and heartfelt thanks to the organizers and hosts of the conference, to the experts and scholars who attended, and to all the guests who were present!


Editor: Samantha

Contact: V10@cbcgdf.org; +8617319454776



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