Assessment of Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals Seed Value Chains: GLDC seed value chains Assessments
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Assessment of Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals Seed Value Chains: GLDC seed value chains Assessments.
This study sought to identify critical areas that can drive sustainability in seed value chains of Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals (GLDC). Data was collected from major actors in Uganda’s GLDC seed value chain using specific questionnaires. From the summarized information, it was clear that the seed value chain for GLDC crops has potential for growth laterally and vertically; to grow the country’s economy and improve household food, income and nutrition security. That notwithstanding, a number of challenges continue to impede the solid growth of these value chains. Seed access to both farmers and local seed businesses was increasingly low especially where improved varieties from seed companies and national breeding programs was concerned. Further, difficulty in getting adequate and stable markets for grain produce acted as a disincentive for farmers’ adoption of the high yielding modern varieties. Drought, pests and diseases were most highlighted as a major contributor to low harvests and in some cases reason to stick to farm saved seed. Access to finance/capital was a problem to seed companies, local seed businesses, grain traders and farmers. Grain (and seed) traders operating within local markets blamed the research system for not pushing out varieties demanded for by their customers. Also cited unanimously was the need to have a synchrony in extension and training by key actors i.e. NGOs, Ministry of Agriculture and Seed companies. This study recommends focus on a) framework on demand–led breeding which ensures farmers (and end consumers e.g. processors) access to the right varieties with desired special attributes; b) low cost capacity building strategies for all actors across the value chain especially on seed quality, utilization and access to credit; c) a critical review of subsidy programs by government or development partners that seem to create artificial seed demand lacking long term sustainability; and d) policies that support additional clauses on easy-to-access seed classes like QDS or standard seed and holistic extension that embraces models of inclusion.
- Agricultural Research Knowledge