Among the collective actions of the World Bank-funded Global Public Goods Phase II Project (GPG2), the following collaborative activity: “Refinement and standardization of storage procedures for clonal crops” was given to the CGIAR’s In Vitro Genebanks, represented by the Clonal Crop Task Force (CCTF) composed of genetic resources research staff from the four centres: Bioversity International, CIAT, CIP and IITA. These hold the in trust collections of Musa, cassava, potato, sweetpotato, yam and Andean root and tuber crops (ARTCs). The overarching aims of this activity were to: (1) review the status of vitro conservation in the context of the GPG2 project with an emphasis on the mandated clonal crops; (2) survey the facilities, storage protocols and practices of CGIAR’s clonal crop genebanks; (3) collate and review this information with a view to developing quality and risk management systems to support the production and validation of multi-crop best practice guidelines. Outputs from this activity are designated as a three part ‘trilogy’:
Part III, “Multi-crop guidelines for developing in vitro conservation best practices for clonal crops” is a compilation of quality and risk management best practices and guidelines from both plant and other bioresources communities. This collective knowledge provided the foundation for developing the GPG2 multi-crop best practice guidelines. They are compiled in two parts. Section I comprises general operational guidelines for quality and risk management in in vitro plant genebanks. Section II provides generic, multi-crop technical guidelines for the medium-term (slow growth) and long-term (cryopreservation) storage of crop germplasm held in In vitro active genebanks (IVAGs) and In vitro base genebanks (IVBGs) respectively.