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The Piloting Phase of ISSD Africa works on the establishment of an African-embedded structure and network of experts, seed programs, and associated organizations in the public and private sectors. The aim is to work on complex challenges that are of strategic importance to the development of a market oriented, pluralistic, vibrant, and dynamic seed sector in Africa. Four thematic areas of engagement have been prioritized for this Piloting Phase.
The programme on Integrated Seed Sector Development in Ethiopia aims to strengthen the development of a vibrant, market-oriented and pluralistic seed sector in the country, where quality seed of superior varieties is available and affordable for a larger number of farmers, thereby contributing to food security and economic development in Ethiopia. The programme is comprised of a number of integrated components, which work complementarily towards achieving the vision of ISSD in Ethiopia.
The ISSD Uganda programme supports the development of a vibrant, pluralistic and market-oriented seed sector in Uganda, providing more than 100,000 smallholder farmers access to affordable quality seed of superior varieties. The programme is working with 30 local seed businesses (LSBs) to produce quality seed of locally adapted crops and varieties for local markets. The purpose is to develop them into commercially sustainable local businesses. The programme also contributes to increasing the effectiveness of respective public institutions in specific supportive tasks in relation to seed production and marketing.
Burundi is part of the second phase of ISSD Africa. A seed sector assessment and seed entrepreneurship assessment was done with stakeholders in Burundi, identifying seed sources of the different seed systems, and existing interventions. Burundi seed sector stakeholders have pronounced the demand for an Integrated Seed Sector Development Programme in Burundi. This has motivated IFDC and KIT / CDI to enter discussions with potential funders for such a programme to improve the access to high quality seed by smallholder producers in Burundi, and would complement programs aimed at improving access to fertiliser and agricultural credit. A project proposal has been developed and is under consideration for funding.
Zambezi Valley, Mozambique: Improved Capacity for Affordable Quality Seed Production and Utilization
From 2016 until 2019, this project, funded by the Netherlands Initiative for Capacity development in Higher Education (NICHE) of Nuffic, will support the Zambezi Agency by strengthening its capacity to develop, implement and maintain innovative gender sensitive educational and action research agribusiness programmes, focusing the seed value chain. These programmes will deliver professional graduates (women and men), business and extension services, that respond to the demands of the labour market and/or generate self-employment in the agribusiness sector in the Zambezi Valley.
Malawi: Promoting entrepreneurship in informal seed systems for legumes
The goal of the project is to increase the local availability of quality legume seed by strengthening capacities for entrepreneurship in informal seed systems. As much as 95% of the legume seed sown by farmers in Malawi is saved, exchanged or bought informally. Farmers, their neighbours, friends and relatives, and traders at the local market are the most important sources of seed for these important crops for food, nutrition and income. In partnership with Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR), Churches Action in Relief and Development (CARD) and Mzuzu Diocese Catholic Development Commission in Malawi (CADECOM), Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation coordinates this initiative of the Global Centre for Food Systems Innovation.