More than 60,000 slender transparent rods encasing seeds from the Kew Millennium Seed Bank partnership that make up the 'Seed Cathedral' will be individually available for purchase in a group auction on 28 October.
"Taobao has made it possible for us to hold this large-scale group shopping event. 'Dandelion' is the UK Pavilion's nickname and through Taobao, we hope this dandelion will be dispersed widely to spread British blessings, friendship and culture throughout China," said Carma Elliot, UK commissioner-general to Shanghai World Expo 2010.
Each of the transparent rods being auctioned will be issued a limited edition serial number and an official certificate of authenticity from the UK Pavilion. Each contains a unique variety of seeds.
Proceeds of the auction will be donated to the Shanghai CereCare Wellness Centre, a residential facility offering physiotherapy and education to young children suffering from cerebral palsy. The auction will begin at 10 am on Thursday, 28 October and can be accessed at http://2010.taobao.com.