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Huge Russian Seed Bank Threatened

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Russian Seed Bank ThreatenedVideo  2min 33sec. One of the biggest and most important seed banks in the world is at risk of being replaced by a private housing development.

The facility near the Russian city of St Petersburg houses thousands of varieties of plants, not found anywhere else in the world.

The center is one of the biggest and oldest of its kind anywhere in the world.

It has one of the largest collections of fruit. A thousand different types of strawberries from forty different nations, 900 different types of black currant, and 300 different strains of cherry..., most of them unique to Pavlovsk.

Workers make a small profit selling plants to locals, but the real value of the site is much greater. Foreign scientists come here to gather rare genetic material. Unlike frozen seed banks, here there are living samples in the field.

Scientists warn that if important genotypes are destroyed the world's food security will be weakened.

Al Jazeera's Neave Barker reports from Pavlovsk in the St Petersburg Region.

Al Jazeera