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Friends, neighbours and village cereal stockists: hope for non-hybrid seed access?

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This presentation was given by Esther Njuguna-Mungai (CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals) on 21 November 2019, as part of the webinar ‘Gender dynamics in formal seed systems in Sub-Saharan Africa and worldwide lessons'. The webinar was co-organized by the CGIAR Collaborative Platform for Gender Research and CGIAR Research Program on Maize.

Read more about this webinar at: https://gender.cgiar.org/webinar-seed-system-ssa/

Find out about other webinars hosted by the CGIAR Collaborative Platform for Gender Research: http://gender.cgiar.org/gender_events/webinars/

Published in: Environment
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Friends, neighbours and village cereal stockists: hope for non-hybrid seed access?

  1. 1. Friends, neighbours and village cereal stockists: hope for non-hybrid seed access? Esther Njuguna-Mungai Gender Coordinator - CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals (GLDC)
  2. 2. Background and introduction • For most CGIAR/NARS breeding programs, when a variety is ready for release to farming communities, the plan is usually to progress from early generation seed to either seed companies or community seed producer groups • if it’s a hybrid seed, the model is new seed is reproduced each season, and the farmers know they need to replace their seed every season • Hybrids are easy to commercialize; there is interest from the seed company and there is a market for the seed products
  3. 3. Background and introduction • For non –hybrid seeds, like the portfolio in GLDC mandate, this model doesn’t work in a linear way • Because the seeds are self pollinating etc, farmers use them for more than one season without dramatic reduction in yields. • Farmers also get alternative channels of sourcing the non-hybrid seeds that are not the typical marketing channel • I share two examples in this presentation
  4. 4. 1. North and East Uganda Mixed Methods Survey, 514 HH, 2018/2019 From whom did you first get to know about/source seed for groundnut variety? 1.11. Region Eastern Northern Total Sex of the head of household Sex of the head of household Sex of the head of household Female Male Female Male Female Male Count Column N % Count Column N % Count Column N % Count Column N % Count Column N % Count Column N % Government extension 1 4.2 3 2.3 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 2.2 3 1.3 Farmer group 1 4.2 3 2.3 4 19.0 4 4.2 5 11.1 7 3.1 NGO/CBO 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 2 2.1 0 0.0 2 .9 Research centre (trials/demos/field days) 1 4.2 11 8.4 1 4.8 0 0.0 2 4.4 11 4.8 Seed/grain stockiest 5 20.8 21 16.0 2 9.5 20 20.8 7 15.6 41 18.1 Another farmer relative 10 41.7 59 45.0 13 61.9 57 59.4 23 51.1 116 51.1 Another farmer neighbor 5 20.8 24 18.3 1 4.8 10 10.4 6 13.3 34 15.0 Radio/newspaper/TV 0 0.0 1 .8 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 .4 Other 0 0.0 9 6.9 0 0.0 2 2.1 0 0.0 11 4.8 Own Seed 1 4.2 0 0.0 0 0.0 1 1.0 1 2.2 1 .4 Total 24 100.0 131 100.0 21 100.0 96 100.0 45 100.0 227 100.0
  5. 5. But why and how do farmers, relatives and neighbours account for 66% of the sources mentioned for groundnuts? Own saved seeds – which is considered key for most legumes accounted for only 2.2% for the female farmers and 0.4% for male farmers Photocredit: Ruth Wanjiku, CBCC. Women farmers in East Uganda
  6. 6. Culture of sharing seeds as an integral part of sharing farm labour Photo credit: Africacare/Adolphe Muwaw. Women working together in South Kivu Female(n=291) Male(n=223) Column N % Column N % No 0.0 .4 Yes 100.0 99.6 No 44.3 42.2 Yes 55.7 57.8 No 44.3 42.6 Yes 55.7 57.4 Community shared labour Eleja Aleya Hired Labour Both family and hired labour sex of the farmer Labour Type used by Farmer Family labour
  7. 7. 2. McGuire and Sperling: The legume and cereals seed sources for 6 countries • Malawi, • Kenya, • DR Congo, • Haiti, • South Sudan and • Zimbabwe • sample of 2592 households 51.2 12.1 28.3 0.2 0.1 1.1 7.1 0.1 44.6 21.1 18.7 0.7 0 2.4 12.4 0 34.8 6.4 51.7 0.1 0.3 0.2 6.6 0 26.7 4.4 56.6 2.4 0.5 4.4 5 0 30.1 5.5 61.4 0.4 0.2 1.4 0.6 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 Own stock friend, neighbour relative local marekt Agrodealer CBSG Government NGO/UN Contract growers Sorghum Millets Groundnuts Cowpeas Pigeonpeas
  8. 8. Cross sectional household survey/Infrastructure, Eastern Kenya (Njuguna et al., 2014) • Farmers close to main county headquarters >10 agrovet shops • Farmers 30km from county headquarters, < 3 agro-vet shops • Farmers 60 km away from county headquarters, <=1 agrovet shop • 500 Households 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 Pigeonpeas Cowpeas Beans Numberofhouseholds Fig 1: Main seed channels for joint legume plots Cereal store/open market Agrovet own saved government Another farmer
  9. 9. Cross sectional household survey/Infrastructure, Eastern Kenya 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 Pigeonpeas beans cowpeas Numberofhouseholds Fig 2: Main seed channels for women legume plots Cereal store/open market Agrovet own saved government Another farmer
  10. 10. Are the cereal stockist’s an opportunity for GLDC gender responsive seed delivery? • Cereal stockists are traders with a shop and storage facility in the trading centres in almost all rural markets centre • Farmers in Eastern Kenya sell their farm produce to the cereal stockists at harvesting time (negative connotation – exploitation?) • The play a key role of legume and cereals aggregation in the local villages. The cereal stockiest are entrepreneurs, they invest in crop protection, sell some of the produce forward on the value chain
  11. 11. Are the cereal stockist’s an opportunity for GLDC gender responsive seed delivery? • At the beginning of the rainy season, they sell ‘grain’ to the farmers, at a higher price, and the farmers use the grain as seed. They are the first link to the market for rural farmers, they are already living in the rural areas Their transaction involves ‘cash’ component With a business objective, they play a critical role in maintenance of germplasm, that is adapted to the local conditions They are trusted by the community members, especially the women who can sell grains in small quantities to them They have a social capital that is also supported by the fact that they sell other consumables, necessary for rural households e.g. soap, sugar – and occasionally run a credit system for the farmers They have the potential to be a ‘varieties/high quality seed’ information hub for the villages
  12. 12. Are the cereal stockist’s an opportunity for GLDC gender responsive seed delivery? • Cereal stockists’ are business men, they are not agriculturalists, do they consider the impact their actions have on the livelihoods and food security of surrounding villages? Do they link the dots? • The regulatory framework (in Kenya) does not give them leverage to sell seed? • Cereal stockists – are they universal in all dryland areas across countries? They are not used by extention processes • GLDC seed systems struggles with entry point for non-hybrids seeds into the commercial delivery pathway, would the cereal stockiest hold the key?
  13. 13. Are the cereal stockist’s an opportunity for GLDC gender responsive seed delivery? • The intimate relationship between the cereal stockists in the rural villages and the rural women and men farmers is a unique social enterprise that needs to be explored for delivery of improved legume varieties. • The policy framework to support their recognition could be tested • Their capacities on knowledge of high-quality seed of improved varieties to be considered. • Every rural woman, even though constrained by mobility norms, always goes to their local trading centres, to sell produce or buy inputs; their chance of interacting with a cereal stockists in the market is very high
  14. 14. Thank you In partnership with CGIAR Centers, public and private organizations, governments, and farmers worldwide Demand-driven Innovation for the Drylands www.gldc.cgiar.org

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