Registration of cultivated rice, wild rice and related genera genetic resources

Contributors to this page: T.T. Chang Genetic Resources Centre-IRRI, Los Baños, Philippines (Ruaraidh Sackville Hamilton, Ken McNally, Flora de Guzman, Renato Reaño, Soccie Almazan, Adelaida Alcantara, Elizabeth Naredo); WARDA, Cotonou, Benin (Ines Sánchez); UPLB-University of the Philippines at Los Baños (Teresita Borromeo).

Verifying accompanying documentation

A minimal documentation is essential to track germplasm material. Health and IPR certificates are very important for entry into the country. The following documents should accompany each consignment of plant germplasm:

Verifying the consignment

This is the accession of new samples into the collection before formal registration (additional tests and procedures that must be completed before the sample can be considered fully accessed into the collection, safely conserved and available for distribution).

Checking the genebank

This is important to verify the legitimacy of the material, to avoid the introduction of new pests and diseases and the storing of dead material, as well as to assure that only seeds that appear in good condition and have a high probability of being viable are registered.

Checking the content

This is very important to avoid conserving duplicates and to have complete information on genebank accessions. This data enhances the value of the germplasm.

Checking the germplasm

Assigning Numbers

When is the moment to assign an accession ID? There are no common agreed standards but there are generally two options:

Advantages of second option:

It facilitates tracking of samples through the initial process of accessing a sample into the collection.

It also facilitates the distinction, for performance monitoring purposes, between the loss of fully-accessed samples (a serious problem) and failure to complete the process of accessing them into the collection (a common feature with samples received in poor condition- this is not related to genebank performance).

Disadvantages of second option:

It requires the use of a second, temporary ID for tracking progress through the initial process of accessing the incoming sample into the collection.

On successful completion of the above described procedures, the incoming seed have been fully accessed into the collection; assign an accession ID now.

Recording information during registration

The following information must be recorded for each consignment:

References and further reading

Bioversity International, IRRI and WARDA. 2007. Descriptors for wild and cultivated rice (Oryza spp.). Bioversity International, Rome, Italy; International Rice Research Institute, Los Banos, Philippines; WARDA, Africa Rice Center, Contonou, Benin. Available here. (1.2 MB).

FAO/IPGRI. 1994. Genebank standards. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome and International Plant Genetic Resources Institute, Rome. Available in English, Spanish, French and Arabic.

Standard Material Transfer Agreement (SMTA). [online] Available from: Date accessed: 15 July 2013.

The Genebanks

The 11 CGIAR genebanks currently conserve 730,000 of cereals and grain legumes, forage crops, tree species, root and tuber crops, bananas and crop wild relatives.