Latest Farmer Seed Systems Resources

Changing the discourse, policy and practice in farmer seed systems in Africa

The ACB is excited to share this new briefing paper (see below for English, French and Portuguese versions), highlighting key issues relating to recognition and support for farmer seed systems in Africa and beyond. Farmers’ seed constitutes the majority of seed used and exchanged. Crops produced from this seed contribute substantially to food and nutrition […]

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Farmer-Managed Seed Systems in Limpopo Province, South Africa – October 2019

The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) co-hosted two farmer exchanges in South Africa in 2019 – in Limpopo and Eastern Cape. The Limpopo meeting and field visit brought together smallholder farmers from Dzomo La Mupo and Mopani Farmers Association (MFA), and officials form Limpopo Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (LDARD). Recognising that industrial agriculture […]

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The time is now! Recognise, affirm, and support farmer seed systems and agroecology in South Africa!

The deepening social, ecological and climate crises require urgent systematic restructuring of our food systems towards biodiverse, agroecological systems, which begins with seed. The African Centre for Biodiversity is excited to share with you groundwork to revive discussions on farmer seed systems in South Africa, in partnership with farmers and civil society. You can read […]

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Burkinabé Bounty connects the resistance of smallholder farmers on the African continent

Burkinabé Bounty connects the resistance of smallholder farmers on the African continent Sabrina Masinjila, ACB’s Outreach and Advocacy officer based in Tanzania, organised a group of farmers to attend a screening of this film at the Zanzibar International Film Festival. She reflects on the experience. The role of art and music to express cultural and […]

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Seed and gene banks play a critical role in conserving and sharing indigenous crop seeds

On a trip to Harare for partnership exploration meetings, the African Centre for Biodiversity visited the Genetic Resources and Biotechnology Institute of Zimbabwe. Gene banks such as these are primarily established to conserve the genetic resources that form the basis for all food production. Seed collections start at the level of community seed banks and […]

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Neoliberals capture South African smallholder farmer support policy

Ideological and factional divisions and contradictions between neoliberals, ‘patrons’ and progressives have manifested in South Africa’s smallholder farmer support policy. This was evident at a national stakeholder consultation held by the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) in April 2019. The policy is meant to support marginalised producers. But it has been thoroughly captured […]

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Input Subsidies in Mozambique: the future of peasant farmers and their seed systems

In this report, the African Centre for Biodiversity outlines and assesses input subsidy programmes in Mozambique, as part of the larger agriculture policy landscape, and the impact this has had on the agricultural sector, particularly on smallholder farmers. In Mozambique, peasant farmers feed the country mostly using their own seed. Yet the majority of (donor-funded) […]

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South Africa’s new Plant Breeders’ Rights Act and its effect on farmers’ rights and farmer managed seed systems

In this updated briefing, the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) warns that the Plant Breeder’s Rights Act (PBR) 2018 will impact negatively on small-scale farmers and calls for exemptions in the Regulations to protect farmers’ rights. The PBR, together with the new Plant Improvement Act (PIA) 2018, was approved by Parliament last October and has […]

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South Africa’s new seed law and its impacts on farmer seed systems and agricultural biodiversity

In this updated briefing, the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) reflects on how the new Plant Improvement Act (PIA) 2018 will further undermine the rights of small-scale farmers while expanding the rights of the corporate agricultural sector, further entrenching its domination. The PIA, together with the new Plant Breeder’s Rights Act (PBR) 2018, was approved […]

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South Africa’s new seed and PVP Acts undermine farmers’ rights and entrench corporate capture, control and domination

Press Release from the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) 23 April 2019, Johannesburg, South Africa The highly problematic new Plant Improvement Act 2018 (PIA) and Plant Breeder’s Rights Act 2018 (PBR), approved by Parliament last year, have been signed into law this March by the President, replacing the 1976 versions. Regulations are currently being drafted […]

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Production quality controls in farmer seed systems in Africa

This ACB report explores issues relating to farmers’ independent seed development, production and distribution. Drawing from innovative case studies in Brazil, East Africa and elsewhere, suggestions are presented to strengthen farmer quality control practices. In sub-Saharan Africa, more than 65% of the population depends on agriculture for their livelihoods, producing around 80% of food consumed. […]

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Alternatives to FISP: Farm Input Subsidy Programmes in Africa

In August 2018, the Rural Women’s Assembly (RWA) and the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) hosted a speak-out for SADC smallholder farmers in Windhoek, Namibia, on Farm Input Subsidy Programmes (FISPs). FISPs are government agricultural programmes that promote the use of Green Revolution inputs produced by multinational corporations. These top-down packages have proven to be […]

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