The Arctic "doomsday vault" built to safeguard the DNA of the world's crops received 60,000 new seed samples Tuesday from 36 different groups, including the Cherokee Nation, the first tribe based in the U.S. to make one, reports The Guardian.
The Svarbalt vault, built to protect millions of food crops from climate change, wars, and natural disasters, now houses samples of about 1.05 million crop varieties from 5,000 species.
Tuesday's deposit includes seeds from 36 institutions, including seeds of 27 wild plants from Prince Charles' Highgrove estates.
"It has proved to be an exhausting and often demoralizing task to persuade people of the utterly essential role played by all this diversity in maintaining vibrant, healthy ecosystems that sustain both people and our planet," the Prince of Wales said in a statement.
"It's more urgent than ever that we act now to protect this diversity before it really is too late," he added.
The Cherokee Nation deposited candy roster squash seeds. Seeds of staple crops such as wheat and rice, as well as wild varieties of European apple trees, were also deposited.
"As the pace of climate change and biodiversity loss increases, there is new urgency surrounding efforts to save food crops at risk of extinction," said Stefan Schmitz, who manages the reserve as head of the Crop Trust.
"The large scope of today's seed deposit reflects worldwide concern about the impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss on food production."
Schmitz said two or three million samples "would be a good idea to make the future of the food of mankind even more secure."
© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.