Genetic Resources

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Germplasm collections

Major crops in IITA genebank

IITA’s genebank holds over 28 000 accessions of major food crops of Africa, namely cowpea (Vigna unguiculata), cassava (Manihot esculenta), yam (Dioscorea sp.), soybean (Glycine max), bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea), maize (Zea mays), and plantain and banana (Musa sp.) (See table below for details). In addition, substantial Vigna wild relatives and miscellaneous legumes collections have been collected over the past 30 years and more recently a small collection of African yam bean (Sphenostylis stenocarpa), an under-used legume.

Common name                    Latin name

Accessions maintained

Seed cropsTotal no.

No. in   



NiébéVigna unguiculata L.1511515003


MaïsZea mays L. 880 0


 SojaGlycine max (L.) Merr 1742 1742

Bambara ground nut

Pois BambaraVigna subterranean (L.) Verdc 1815 1815

Wild Vigna


African yam bean



Sphenostylis stenocarpa (Hochst. ex A. Rich.) Harms 66 66

Miscellaneous legumes
(Winged bean, Pigeon pea, Lablab, Lima bean, Jack- and sword-bean, Green gram, Mung bean)

 Psophocarpus tetragonolobus
Cajanus cajun
Lablab purpureus
Phaseolus lunatus
Canavalia species
Vigna radiata
Vigna mungo

 600+ 0
Clonal crops  


ManiocManihot esculenta Crantz 2712 2078


IgnameDioscorea abysinnica, D. alata, D. bulbifera, D. cayenensis, D. dumentorum, D. esculenta, D. manganotiana, D. Preusii, D. rotundata 3200 3087


Musa acuminata, M. balbisiana, M. schizocarpa, M. basjoo, M. laterita, M. peekeli 250 0


Select and Order Germplasm

Ordering germplasm

  1. Select Germplasm using IITA Accessions 2
  2. Provide a summary of the intended use of germplasm.
  3. Accept STANDARD Material transfer agreement.

Germplasm transfer involves SMTA (Standard Material Transfer Agreement [Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish] and annex 1 list).

Bambara groundnutSMTA
Wild VignaSMTA
Africa yam beanMTA

Miscellaneous legumes (Main collections)

Depends on species
Manihot esculenta Crantz 

Upon receiving confirmation that you agree with the term of the transfer, a hard copy of this agreement will be included in the seed pack you will receive. Opening this pack will confirm you agree with the terms of the transfer (shrink wrap agreement).

4. Provide official documents stipulating import permit and phytosanitary certificate requirements to import selected germplasm to the importing country.

This document must be issued or endorsed by the Plant Quarantine and Protection Services of the receiving country. Depending on stock and importing country phytosanitary requirements, distribution may take from 2 to 16 months (time to regenerate stock and/or perform sanitation).

For additional information please contact genebank (click here)

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