The History of Seed Banks with Dr. Helen Anne Curry


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Seed banks are collections of seeds that researchers use to protect valuable genetic resources both for breeding and conservation purposes. But where did they get started and how have they become what they are today? On this episode, Dr. Helen Anne Curry will guide us through the history of seed banks, including their origins, the various phases of their development, and their ongoing role today.

Tune in to learn:

  • What seed banks are and what they can look like around the world
  • What controversies and challenges seed banking has faced
  • How seed banks have moved from local to global efforts (and back again)

This podcast is part of the Societies Seed Week, which will be running from March 22-26, 2021. Check out the Seed Week link below, where you’ll find links to papers, k-12 activities, videos, news stories, blogs, and more.

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Contact us at or on Twitter @FieldLabEarth if you have comments, questions, or suggestions for show topics, and if you want more content like this don’t forget to subscribe.

If you would like to reach out to Helen, you can find her here:


CEU Quiz:

Societies’ Seed Week Home Page:

'Why Save a Seed?' by Helen Anne Curry:

You can discover more of Helen Anne Curry's research here:

The Profit of the Earth by Courtney Fullilove:


Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR):

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO):

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