In most developing countries, good quality seed is hard to obtain and farmers struggle to save seed from one year to the next. Instead, they increasingly turn to public or private enterprises that multiply, store and distribute seed. African Seed Enterprises takes a people-centred look at the companies, public agencies and family farms that are taking on this role and making a difference to food security across Africa. Case studies are arranged by country, and each chapter includes a profile of the agricultural and policy environment that surrounds these enterprises and affects their development. Each case is unique and presents its own set of lessons, and as a whole, this wide range of experiences is a rich source of data and ideas for future enterprise, offering valuable insights for policy makers, academics and non-governmental organizations throughout the world.
Paul Van Mele is an agricultural scientist from Ghent University, Belgium who obtained his PhD studying Vietnamese fruit farmers' knowledge of pests, natural enemies and pesticides (Wageningen University, 2000). He wrote Ants as Friends (2003) and edited Way out of the Woods (2003) and Innovations in Rural Extension (2005). In 2004, his video project with rural women in Bangladesh won an international award for effective communication. From 2005 to 2010, Paul Van Mele lived in Benin, working as program leader, Learning and Innovation Systems at AfricaRice. His work with farmers, video and rural radio earned him the 2009 CGIAR Science Award for outstanding communications. He currently runs his own enterprise Agro-Insight, based in Belgium and works for AfricaRice
1: Introduction: A full granary 2: How seed works 3: Cameroon: Revolving funds make a difference 4: Nigeria: Clustered seed companies 5: Mali: When government gives entrepreneurs room to grow 6: Guinea: Networks that work 7: The Gambia: Capturing the media 8: Morocco: The visible hand 9: Kenya: A company, a cooperative and a family 10: Uganda: Dreams of starting a company 11: Madagascar: coping with relief aid and politics 12: Conclusions 13: Acronyms and abbreviations 14: Glossary of terms