Making high quality soybean seeds accessible to smallholder farmers in Malawi {(Reseeding Malawi’s Smallholder Agriculture- Legumes) (Feed the Future Malawi Improved Seed System and Technologies-Legumes)}

According to the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS, II, 2010) , agriculture contributes about 80% of the country’s total workforce, 75% of foreign exchange earnings and 38% of GDP. This critical sector is heavily reliant on rainfall, and based on smallholdings less than 1 ha (MGDS II, 2010). Production and productivity is also compounded by climate change effects, limited access to agricultural inputs (especially improved crop varieties), weak output markets, limited access to credit, HIV/AIDS, and low adoption of improved agricultural technologies. The Agriculture Sector Wide programme (ASWAp), Government of Malawi’s CAADP flagship investment strategy , and the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy, have prioritized improvement in technology delivery, especially the seed systems of major staple and income security crops in the country. The focus of this proposal is to strengthen technology delivery in Malawi with specific attention to Balaka, Dedza, Lilongwe rural, Machinga, Mchinji, Mangochi and Ntcheu, districts in the USAID-Malawi zones of influence. Four components implemented by CIP, CIMMYT, IITA and ICRISAT, each focusing of the same or different types of agricultural innovations will be addressed over the next 3-4 years in seven selected districts.

Goals

The goal of the project is to increase soybean production and productivity through a sustainable improved seed system so that Malawi can meet its annual soybean seed and grain demand. The purpose is to stimulate the commercialization and distribution of improved soybean seeds by establishing a well-functioning pipeline to produce and disseminate high quality seed of improved varieties (i.e. breeder, foundation and certified seed) through close collaboration with national programs, seed companies, NGOs, seed producers, fertilizer companies, agrodealers, and farmers to enhance access by smallholder farmers. The project has four main objectives:

1. Support for breeder, foundation and certified seed production 2. Increasing adoption through variety demonstration and promotion 3. Seed distribution and marketing 4. Capacity building and strengthening seed partnerships

Contact

Akinwale, Gbenga Moses

Project duration

Start: 09 December 2014
End: 30 June 2019

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