The harvest is in the seed

Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, we at AfricaSeeds are conscious that seed delivery is crucial to ensure that farmers can plant their preferred varieties on time for the next season. During these unprecedented times, seed sector actors need to find new ways to carry out this essential service.

Some of us may have to work remotely, and need improved access to knowledge and information online, rather than face-to-face. Some other may need to acquire new skills. To respond to these needs, we are making information and knowledge about the seed system more readily available for all actors of the seed sector.

There are numerous quality information materials about seed sector sustainable development available out there. This wealth of knowledge addresses the entire array of the seed value chain. It can be used to strengthen the capacity along all steps of the seed value chain, for a more coordinated and effective seed sector development.

Every week, we highlight a specific initiative that is working towards strengthening knowledge about the seed sector in Africa via the publication of training material, guidelines, policy briefs, frameworks, datasets, videos, etc. The improved visibility of these initiatives will contribute to increase seed security, thus boosting the foundation of food security and livelihoods of Africa.

Support capacity development in the seed sector by sharing these resources!

©IFPRI
12 Jan, 2021 No Comments

Week 14 – Policy Brief: Gender dynamics in seed systems development

Authors: Kramer, Berber and Galiè, Alessandra; International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Topics: seed sector, gender, smallholder farmers, research

All agricultural production – whether of crops, trees, forages, livestock, or fish – starts with seeds, making seed security vital to food security. Seed security means that producers – smallholder farmers especially –

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©Springer Nature
08 Jan, 2021 No Comments

Week 13 – Publication: Enhancing Smallholder Farmers’ Access to Seed of Improved Legume Varieties Through Multi-stakeholder Platforms

Authors: Akpo, E., Ojiewo, C.O., Kapran, I., Omoigui, L.O., Diama, A., Varshney, R.K. (Eds.), International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)
Topics: seed sector, Legumes, Africa, smallholder farmers, partnership

This book shares the experiences of Tropical Legumes III (TLIII) project led by ICRISAT in facilitating access to seed of improved legume varieties to smallholder farmers through innovation platforms. It highlights practices and guiding principles implemented in eight countries of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

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©Palgrave
04 Jan, 2021 No Comments

Week 12 – Publication: Globalisation and Seed Sovereignty in sub-Saharan Africa

Author: Clare O’Grady Walshe, International Political Economy Series, Springer Nature Switzerland
Topics: seed sector, food sovereignty, Africa, globalisation

This book is an important milestone for the sector. It studies the relationship between globalisation and seed sovereignty and what this means for sub-Saharan Africa. It identifies the interests and motivations of the different actors in the seed space and points to ways in which national and local actors can help to ensure the exercise of seed sovereignty in the future.

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©ISSD
10 Dec, 2020 No Comments

Week 11 – Research results: Gender and promoting quality seeds in Africa: A literature review

Author: ISSD, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) & Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
Topics: seed sector, research, innovation, gender

Advances in plant breeding and biotechnology have the potential to transform agriculture in Africa, but sustainable and inclusive distribution and marketing of quality seeds remains a significant challenge.

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©WDCI-ISSD
21 Nov, 2020 No Comments

Week 10 – Methodology: Rapid Seed Assessments and Alerts

Author: AidEnvironment, Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation (WCDI) & ISSD
Topics: seed sector, transformation, evidence-based decisions

The Rapid Assessments are currently being piloted to assess the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the functioning of the seed sector in Ethiopia, Myanmar, Nigeria, and Uganda, where WCDI collaborates with national partners in seed programmes.

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© FAO
22 Oct, 2020 No Comments

Week 9 – Guidelines: Voluntary guide for national seed policy formulation

Author: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Topics: seed sector, governance, policy

This guide explains what seed policies are and how they differ from seed laws; describes the participatory process of seed policy formulation; the nature and layout of seed policy documents; key elements contained in seed policies; and addresses issues involved in their implementation.

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©ICRISAT
11 Oct, 2020 No Comments

Week 8 – Guidelines: ICRISAT models and lesson learnt on seed systems

Author: International Crop Research Institute for the Arid Tropics
Topics: seed sector, governance, research

ICRISAT aims at building, with partners across crop value chains, inclusive and sustainable seed systems that provide dryland small farmers with sufficient quantity of high quality seeds, at the right time and right place, at reasonable costs.
In this webpage, you will find useful models and lessons learnt on the seed dilemma: How to reach smallholder farmers. Available in English.

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©Access to Seed Index
01 Oct, 2020 No Comments

Week 7 – Documentary base: publications of the Access to seeds index

Author: Access to Seeds Index Initiative
Topics: seed enterprises, performance, seed sector, private sector

Part of the World Benchmarking Alliance, the Seed Access Index assesses and compares seed companies on their efforts to improve access to quality seeds of improved varieties for smallholder farmers. The index primarily seeks to identify leadership and good practice, providing a database for discussion on where and how the seed industry can step up its efforts.

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AGRA ©
11 Sep, 2020 No Comments

Week 5 – Document base: Feed the Future programs initiatives

Authors: USAID, Catholic Relief Services, AGRA, Seed Systems Group
Themes: Early Generation Seeds, market, innovation, policies

USAID’s Feed the Future programs and partners have been striving to create quality seeds of improved crop varieties in order to deliver higher yields to smallholder farmers. Partners include: Catholic Relief Services through USAID support, AGRA, and the Seed Systems Group.

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