Seed systems are the network of actors and institutions that facilitate a farmer’s access to seeds. The formal seed sector focuses on breeding and evaluating improved varieties, as well as producing, processing, and marketing certified seed. In the formal system, these activities and responsible institutions are all defined in the seed law and regulations. 2
Supporting Seed Systems
Since 2019, in partnership with The African Seed Access Index (TASAI), DG through the VISTA program has been working to help decision-makers, public sector, development partners, private sector businesses, and farmers visualize and use data to support a fully functional formal seed system. Currently, TASAI manually collects information on 21 indicators in 20 countries. DG is working to digitize the data collection and validation process through digital survey tools. The collected data will be transformed from traditional narrative reports in PDF into easy-to-understand data visualizations and a publicly accessible dashboard. The dashboard will assess seed quality, availability, accessibility, and price in 16 countries in Africa.
DG is working with TASAI to ensure that the indicators are gender-sensitive and on mapping stakeholders to better understand and meet user needs. Finally, as TASAI is still a newer non-profit organization, DG is advising TASAI on monitoring and evaluation plans, administrative systems, and future funding. By digitizing the data processes, creating an actionable dashboard, and supporting TASAI as the organization grows, DG is working to diagnose information use gaps, ensure a sustainable impact on the larger seed system, and improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.
1 The African Access Seed Index
In partnership with Africafertilizer.org, the International Fertilizer Development Center, the Ghana Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Ghana Statistical Service, the Ghana Revenue Authority, Ghana Cocoa Board, and other partners, DG had a soft launch of the new Ghana fertilizer dashboard.
From the creation of survey tools to stakeholder mapping, one year into DG's partnership with TASAI, the Visualizing Information on Seeds Using Technology in Africa (VISTA) program has made great progress.