Are Farmer-Based Seed Enterprises Profitable and Sustainable? Experiences of VBSEs from Afghanistan
Zewdie Bishaw, Abdoul Aziz Niane. (29/11/2015). Are Farmer-Based Seed Enterprises Profitable and Sustainable? Experiences of VBSEs from Afghanistan. Hyderabad, India: Chris Ojiewo (Curator).
Farmers are the main producers and users of seed for the millennia. Empirical evidence shows ample experiences of farmers’ knowledge of on-farm seed management practices such as plant and/or seed selection, cleaning, treatment and storage for own use or local exchange. Traditionally, grain production and seed production is an integrated activity at the farmer level. This still continues for many crops in the developing world where the introduction of modern agriculture; classical plant breeding coupled with mechanization, fertilization or commercialization is yet to be widespread. Along this evolutionary path from traditional to modern agriculture, emerged the first farmer entrepreneurs who took up seed as a secondary business, planting the embryonic stage of organized seed industry. Over time these local farmer entrepreneurs (seed producers, users and sellers) within the community evolved into small-scale seed enterprises, with sole interest in seed business gradually developing into medium and later to larger seed companies. In this transitory phase from seed producers/ users/ sellers are still a plethora of community seed producers of different shapes and sizes involving farmers and supported by a variety of development organizations throughout the developing world. To date, it is common to see a multitude of community seed production schemes operating across countries in areas where the formal sector is absent. In broader terms these community seed production activities can be collectively called farmer-based seed production and marketing schemes with many variant names and arrangements. In this paper, ICARDA’s experience in organizing village-based seed enterprises (VBSEs) underpinned by sustainability will be presented using examples from Afghanistan and elsewhere in the Central West Asia and North Africa re
Niane, Abdoul Azizhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-0873-4394