Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 13, Issue 4, pp 663-684

First online:

In situ conservation of crop wild relatives: status and trends

  • Brien A. MeilleurAffiliated withCentre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Eco-anthropologie: environnements, populations, sociétés, Laboratoire d'Ethnobiologie, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle Email author 
  • , Toby HodgkinAffiliated withGenetic Resources Science and Technology Group, International Plant Genetic Resources Institute

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Recognized as a priority three decades ago, in situ conservation of crop wild relatives has developed theoretical and methodological focus and achieved significant on-the-ground progress in the last 10 years, most notably under the impetus of the plant genetic resources community. Literature and Internet searches and interviews with experts were undertaken as a basis for reviewing the current status and trends of this effort worldwide. Country-by-country summaries on in situ crop wild relatives conservation activities are presented, and recommendations are made for future action. Principal recommendations include ‘flagging’ of appropriate taxa as crop wild relatives in botanical and conservation databases, undertaking gap analyses to locate crop wild relatives hotspots, and enhancing cooperation between the plant genetic resources and plant conservation communities.

Crop wild relatives In situ conservation IPGRI Plant genetic resources