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Seed Banks

Seed banks are special facilities that help safeguard important seeds.

Seeds can be stored for decades or even centuries and pulled out if needed to help jumpstart food production after natural or manmade disasters.

Many countries set up their own seed banks that store crop seeds like wheat, barley, or peas. But some national seed banks have been destroyed, so global seed banks have opened to act as fail-safes.

The Svalbard Global Seed Bank has a capacity of two and a quarter billion seeds. It's located in an isolated area inside the Arctic Circle that's ideal for seed storage. By creating these facilities, scientists hope to create a "Noah's Ark" for seeds that will preserve genetic diversity and protect vital crops for future generations.

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Entrance to Svalbard Seed Bank in the Artic
© Mari Tefre/Svalbard Global Seed Vault

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