Malawi Seed Sector Challenges
Like any other sector, Malawi Seed sector has a number of challenges and among others below are highlighted
- Inadequate Services from Certification Agency. This means services are not timely delivered and as required to stakeholders. Accreditation of private seed inspectors and seed laboratories may minimize the challenge.
- Poor Grain Market and Export Bans: Markets are not known in advance. This continue to affect the size to seed markets. Export bands have long term effect on seed production and demand for certified seed.
- Limited Awareness on Importance of Using Certified Seed. More farmers plant uncertified seed that gives them low yield per unit area. There is potential to improve adoption if awareness can be created
- Illogical Timing of seed procurement by certain programs. Seed is a business of time as has small window to make sales and the country has one rainfall season. To ensure timely delivery and in right quantities government seed procurement programs should be known to industry in advance.
- Fake seed or illegal seed sales. This is a result of limited awareness and weak enforcement of the seed legislation. For recent years fake seed on the market has declined as a result of STAM efforts to stamp out fake seed and in liaison with DARS on use of scratch seed label.
- Inadequacy of availability of foundation seed for most public germplasm. Demand forecast for certified through known grain market and consumption requirement and production of foundation seed through contracts may minimize the challenge.