The Ministry of Agriculture pays special attention to preserving the biodiversity of our country

Plants and animals used in agriculture, as key genetic resources, are the basis of our food production – said Dr. István Nagy, Minister of Agriculture.

The biological diversity of agriculture has now been in the same endangered position as wildlife. However, the conservation of agrobiodiversity is essential for the future society to be able to provide adequate responses to climate change and the challenges of food crises. On a global scale Hungary is in a fortunate position, since a significant part of the animal and plant species have been saved in the Carpathian Basin.

The Government of Hungary has adopted a separate strategy to support the development of Hungarian gene conservation institutions and their programs, more than HUF 12 billion in support. Within the framework of the National Gene Conservation Program, which was launched in 2019, several improvements were made among others by the National Centre for Biodiversity and Gene Conservation Institution in Tápioszele, which is considered to have one of the largest gene bank collections in the world. Here the approximate 135,000 gene bank patterns and the features stored in them are the key to developing resistance against increasing droughts and various diseases. Moreover, the constantly expanding DNA bank of the Institute for Farm Animal Gene Conservation in Gödöllő, storing 11,200 gene bank items, was renewed. Here, uniquely in Hungary, can be found the adulterants of all native poultry species and breeds, as well as the gene bank items of sheep, cattle, horses, rabbits and Hungarian dog breeds.

The Gene Conservation Strategy aims to implement sample programmes like saving and conserving the Carpathian “borzderes” (Braunvieh) cattle, the Hungarian Muraköz breed cold-blooded horse and the Hungarian “parlag” donkey. Targeted programs launched, with the involvement of farmers, in the field of plant gene conservation including the maintenance of arable and vegetable crops, the preservation and examination of grapes and fruit-bearing plants, and the extension of the Pomologist Agreement, which has a 10-year history.

The implementation of the Gene Conservation Strategy is a huge step forward in the conservation of national treasures, which is our high priority interest, since in this way we can reduce our defencelessness against foreign adulterants and build the independence of Hungarian agriculture.