Lord Sainsbury is aiming to become the first Briton to give away at least £1bn in his lifetime.
The Government science minister has said he wants to ensure his charitable funds are spent wisely during his lifetime, and that his wishes are not ignored.
Lord Sainsbury of Turville - his full title - is in favour of genetic technology, a view that saw him relinquish ministerial responsibility for GM policy. His comments reflect his concern that trustees might not continue to fund such causes after his death.
The Gatsby Charitable Foundation is linked to the fortune of Sainsbury's supermarkets and has made £500m in charitable donations since Lord Sainsbury created it in 1967 at the age of 27. It now has £321m in its reserves, which is set to generate future income of many more millions of pounds.