Policy measures for stimulating indigenous seed enterprises
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Samuel kugbei, Zewdie Bishaw. (23/8/2002). Policy measures for stimulating indigenous seed enterprises, in "Seed Policy, Legislation and Law: Widening a Narrow Focus". United States of America: The haworth PR.
Considering the limited success of the public sector in delivering seed to small farmers in remote areas, and the lack of commercial interest on the part of large seed companies, it seems that small and location-specific enterprises may be the best option for fulfilling this role. However, the strategy in promoting such enterprises should differ from the usual 'top-down' measures characteristic of large seed projects and companies because the conditions are different in terms of crops, resources, and potential profitability. Small-scale enterprises require community-based interventions since these businesses are meant to serve small farmers in rural areas. Attracting investment in this form of seed supply, and creating sufficient interest in the community for the seed the enterprises produce, are formidable challenges. They need a strong commitment on the part of governments in introducing favorable policies and providing adequate incentives that can encourage investment. The enterprises should be allowed to evolve using the community as a basis. Therefore, policy interventions should be consistent and provide adequate support and protection for both the producers and the seed-using customers. Pioneer enterprises should operate without external support, such as direct subsidies even though subsidized services may be necessary to make the environment favorable. Once the competition has developed, the production and use of seed will then become sustainable since forces within the farming community will drive both supply and demand. Successful small enterprises may join forces in form of association as a means of protecting their interests and serving as a forum for sharing experiences.
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