The African Technology Foundation (AATF) and Seed Entrepreneurs Association of Nigeria (SEEDAN) have collaborated to commercialize improved seed varieties produced by Nigerian scientists.
This is part of efforts to make quality seeds available for farmers and for the country to achieve food security.
While receiving the new executives of SEEDAN on Thursday in his office in Abuja, the AATF Regional Representative for West Africa, Dr Jean Baptiste, said the product to commercialise include the Pod Borer Resistant (PBR) cowpea which was developed in Nigeria.
He said the Tela Maize which will be released by the end of this year in January 2024 will also be commercialized.
Dr Baptiste urged the local seed industry to support deployment of agricultural technology, which he said will spill over to other countries that are still in dilemma over adopting biotechnology.
The AATF Regional Representative further reiterated the need for seed enterprises to take their marketing strategy to farmers in the rural areas.
Furthermore, Baptiste noted that the Foundation is available to partner seed enterprises for Nigeria and Africa to achieve commercialisation of those varieties that can help improve food security and tackle malnutrition in the country and other parts of the continent.
“We hope that we’ll be able to collaborate in a synergistic way so that we can achieve commercialization of a certain number of products AATF is promoting in Nigeria.
“And among those products you have, first of all PBR. And we also have Tela maize that will be released by the end of this year or January 2024.
The SEEDAN President, Yusuf Ado-kibiya, while speaking, lamented that there are enough seeds produced but lack of market to sell the products.
He called on the government to make relevant policies, funds and the enabling environment for provision of quality seeds.
Ado-kibiya said they would unify all seed companies just like other countries for Nigeria to achieve food security.
The Seed merchant added that the Universities and research institutes have been dormant for years due to lack of funds which they hope to partner with them to do more research to produce quality seeds for Nigerian farmers.
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