Millennium Seed Bank Partnership


Seed Conservation Techniques Training Course 2021

We are delighted to announce that the MSBP’s popular Seed Conservation Techniques (SCT) training course will be running from the 11th to the 22nd of October 2021. Following the Partnership’s agreed Seed Conservation Standards, the course provides trainees with the knowledge needed to collect, conserve and manage high quality ex-situ collections of wild plant seeds. Topics covered will include – planning a seed collection programme, assessing and collecting techniques, post-harvest handling, measuring seed moisture content, seed processing and quality assessment, and seed germination and dormancy. After a successful first online version was piloted last year, we will again offer a fully online 2-week training course with content provided online as a mixture of live sessions, pre-recorded training modules and practical exercises.

To register your interest in the course and for further details, please contact the training coordinator, Hanna Oldfield at

The Millennium Seed Bank's global network, The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership (MSBP), is the largest ex situ plant conservation programme in the world. Our focus is on global plant life faced with the threat of extinction and plants of most use for the future. The State of the World's Plants Report highlighted that an estimated two in five of global plant species are threatened with extinction. The seeds we save are conserved in seed banks as an insurance against the risk of extinction in their native habitat.

Working with our network of partners across 97 countries and overseas territories, we have successfully banked 16% of the world's wild plant species. We target plants and regions most at risk from the ever-increasing impact of human activities, including land use and climate change. You can find out more about our current projects here.

The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership newsletter, Samara, is published twice annually. It contains interesting stories and experiences from our partners across the globe. Issues of Samara can be accessed here.

Seeds are available for distribution to bona fide users, view the MSB Seed List here. There are also a number of different MSBP resources for use by our partners and other parties. See our Resources page to view what is available.

Kew's Millennium Seed Bank currently holds 97,408 seed collections of 39,968 species from 190 countries and territories (updated on 10-May-2021).

The targets of the Millennium Seed Bank help to achieve Target 8 of the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation, one of the Cross-Cutting Issues of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

This website and the linked database are curated and published using BRAHMS and BRAHMS online

Why Kew saves seeds

2 in 5 plant species are estimated to be threatened with extinction.

Plants are dying out largely due to the activities of people. Clearing of primary vegetation, over-exploitation and climate change are all causing species losses.

We need plants, because plants are useful. Plants provide the air we breathe, they provide clean water, fuel, building materials, fibres, resins and we all rely on plants for food.

Plants also play a vital role in combating climate change. Plants maintain the atmosphere and counteract climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide, turning it into plant material. Kew's projects are supporting plants in mitigating and adapting to our changing climate.