Seeds 4 Change is a 3-year project coordinated and implemented by NABC and 6 Dutch companies, seed breeders and experts in biological crop protection, partly funded by the Dutch government. S4C aims for the development of the vegetable sector in Kano by the provision of high- quality vegetable seeds and biological crop protection combined with training of farmers on how to cultivate vegetables with improved inputs. Access to improved inputs and knowledge transfer will be facilitated through trials, demonstrations, capacity building activities (on-farm trainings and open field days) focused on crop management, basic and improved cultivation techniques and good agricultural practices.
Nigeria is the largest economy of Africa and one of the fastest growing countries in the world, with a population of almost 200 million, estimated to grow to 400 million in 2050. This brings demographic challenges in terms of food security, urbanization and unemployment.
Because of the growing population and middle class currently, there is a higher demand for nutritious food and diversity in fruit and vegetables which are essential ingredients for people’s health and development. However, growing vegetables in tropical circumstances is not easy due to disease pressure, insects, and fungus.
High-quality inputs selected for tropical agronomic circumstances and resistant to pests and diseases can provide a solution to these challenges, but improved inputs should be combined with knowledge transfer and capacity building of farmers’ skills.
The S4C program has been developed to address the growing demand and need for a greater diversity of vegetables; the lack of farmer information; poor access to inputs; and poor cultivation techniques.
S4C aims to provide part of the solution through access to improved seeds and biological crop protection for Nigerian (smallholder) farmers combined with capacity building and a transfer of knowledge through practical demonstrations, farmer-to-farmer learning and trainings.
The core objectives of the S4C program are:
Providing smallholder and mediumscale farmers access to high quality input material by way of trials and on-farm demonstrations
Capacity building and training of smallholder and medium scale farmers
Knowledge transfer and awareness raising by the exchange of knowledge on the use and benefits of improved inputs coupled with GAP (Good Agricultural Practices)
Business to business and business to government dialogues
Linking farmers to off-takers and innovative financing mechanisms (seed capital)
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