Informal Seed Systems

Vice Versa Special Issue on Seeds

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Good seeds can help farmers get better harvest, achieve higher food security and crop diversity. At the same time trading with seeds gives a lot of power to large seed companies. Vice Versa delved into the world of seeds and made this special edition forcused on the question: how do small-scale farmers from Africa and Asia come upon good quality seeds, and what problems do they face in the process.

Local Seed Business in the Context of Integrated Seed Sector Development

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In this paper, Integrated Seed Sector Development (ISSD) describes its guiding principles, and provide examples of how it works with the system of local seed business (LSB) in regards to ISSD Ethiopia and ISSD Uganda.

A Differentiated Approach to Plant Variety Protection in Africa

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Authors: Bram De Jonge & Peter Munyi 

Several African countries and regional organisations are investing in the establishment of a plant variety protection system modelled on the UPOV 1991 Convention, which currently provides the strongest, international standard for plant variety protection.

Moving Towards More Effective Seed Aid

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Seed aid is increasingly applied as an emergency response throughout Africa. This article describes its rise, its goals and the seed security principles which should shape it.

Understanding and strengthening informal seed markets

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This paper documents the importance of informal markets for supplying seed and restocking critical plant genetic resources in normal and stress periods.

Integrating Genetic Resource Conservation and Sustainable Development into Strategies to Increase the Robustness of Seed Systems

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This article introduces a framework for analysing seed supply strategies by considering principles of agrobiodiversity conservation, formal and informal seed systems, market and service orientation, and the strengthening of local institutions.

Linking Participatory Plant Breeding to the Seed Supply System

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The purpose of this paper is to examine the technical, regulatory, and policy aspects of how participatory breeding approaches relate to both the  formal and informal sectors.

The role of informal farmer-to-farmer seed distribution in diffusion of new barley varieties in Syria

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This study examines the role, structure and effectiveness of informal seed systems in the diffusion of new barley varieties.

Collaboration of Farmers and Breeders: Participatory Crop Improvement in Perspective

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Participatory Crop Improvement (PCI) has developed over the past decade as an alternative and complementary breeding approach to Formal Crop Improvement (FCI).

African Seed and Biotechnology Programme

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This report covers the programme of the African Seed and Biotechnology Programme to address food security.