Improving the availability and use of diverse seed and planting materials to reduce vulnerability and improve food security for smallholders

Project completed

The project increases directly the availability and diversity of planting materials to smallholders to reduce vulnerability to external shocks as well as improving policy dialogue at various levels, on equity and redistribution issues regarding seed systems. Smallholders in developing countries will get political recognition for their role in germplasm conservation and get improved access to the necessary diversity of planting material needed for their families’ food security. The existing international policy framework shall be adapted to respond to the reality and the needs of smallholders in vulnerable ecosystems of developing countries.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Global
Climate change and environment
Biodiversity
Environmental policy
Biosphere protection
01.08.2012 - 31.12.2016
CHF 1'700'000
Background

1.2 billion of the 3 billion people living in the rural areas of developing countries are largely small family farms that use traditional or informal sources to meet their seed or planting material needs. The formal sector provides less than 5% of the seeds used to produce traditional staple foods of West Africa and less than 10% of the rice in Nepal. Today little attention is given to supporting a diversified offer of the suppliers and multipliers of diverse planting materials as a mean to reduce vulnerability to food insecurity of smallholders, particularly in vulnerable ecosystems and in the light of climatic change.

Objectives

Smallholders in developing countries have access to diversified seed and other planting materials that maintains their resilience to climate change and their food security.

Target groups

The major beneficiaries are smallholders in Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Nepal, Uganda and Uzbekistan. Educators, researchers and decision makers will benefit by being actively sought for leadership, management and research roles. Outreach will include building leadership and capacity of smallholders to participate more effectively in local and national decision-making fora. Capacity and leadership skills are also specifically targeted towards the “middle level” institutions, i.e. local- or site-level educational, technical and research institutes that can be enhanced to support the production and dissemination of genetic resources.

Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1: Provision of local crop diversity through seed suppliers, institutions and other national stakeholders, in large enough quantities and with the necessary quality to minimize risk for smallholders in vulnerable ecosystems. Outcome 2: Smallholders are shock resilient and food secure through access to sufficient crop genetic resources. Outcome 3: Seed systems and crop plant conservation policies are better connected to the realities of smallholders at local, national and global levels through enhanced policy dialogue.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
Foreign academic and research organisation
  • Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research
  • Bioversity International (BI)


Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   1'700'000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   1'699'196
Project phases Phase 2 01.10.2017 - 30.09.2021   (Current phase)

Phase 1 01.08.2012 - 31.12.2016   (Completed)