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Moving Towards More Effective Seed Aid

Author

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  • Louise Sperling
  • H David Cooper
  • Tom Remington

Abstract

Seed aid is increasingly applied as an emergency response throughout Africa. This article describes its rise, its goals and the seed security principles which should shape it. Drawing on evidence of the effects of disaster, the article reviews the appropriateness of current seed aid responses and suggests ways to link the type of seed security problem with the type of response employed. Direct seed distribution, the dominant form, seems suited for a subset of conditions when farmers procure seed through formal channels and when seed is not sufficiently available in an area. Seed vouchers and fairs may be more widely applicable as this approach strengthens channels that farmers normally use (both formal and informal) and addresses the more common problem of farmers' lack of access to seed. Key for improving seed aid is a better understanding of how local seed markets function, as these provide a core of seed security in normal and stress periods.

Suggested Citation

  • Louise Sperling & H David Cooper & Tom Remington, 2008. "Moving Towards More Effective Seed Aid," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 586-612, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:44:y:2008:i:4:p:586-612
    DOI: 10.1080/00220380801980954
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Barriga, Alicia & Fiala, Nathan, 2020. "The supply chain for seed in Uganda: Where does it go wrong?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 130(C).
    2. Barriga, Alicia & Fiala, Nathan, 2018. "The supply chain for seed in Uganda: Where does it all go wrong?," Working Paper series 290139, University of Connecticut, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
    3. Lucy Mulugo & Florence Birungi Kyazze & Paul Kibwika & Bonaventure Aman Omondi & Enoch Mutebi Kikulwe, 2020. "Seed Security Factors Driving Farmer Decisions on Uptake of Tissue Culture Banana Seed in Central Uganda," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(23), pages 1-17, December.
    4. Louise Sperling & Patrick Gallagher & Shawn McGuire & Julie March & Noel Templer, 2020. "Informal Seed Traders: The Backbone of Seed Business and African Smallholder Seed Supply," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(17), pages 1-18, August.
    5. Lourenco Borges & Adalfredo Rosario Ferreira & Deolindo Silva & Robert Williams & Rebecca Andersen & Alex Dalley & Brian Monaghan & Harry Nesbitt & William Erskine, 2009. "Improving food security through agricultural research and development in Timor-Leste: a country emerging from conflict," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 1(4), pages 403-412, December.
    6. Ola Tveitereid Westengen & Kristine Skarbø & Teshome Hunduma Mulesa & Trygve Berg, 2018. "Access to genes: linkages between genebanks and farmers’ seed systems," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 10(1), pages 9-25, February.
    7. Lopes, Modesto & Nesbitt, Harry, 2012. "Improving food security in Timor-Leste with higher yield crop Varieties," 2012 Conference (56th), February 7-10, 2012, Fremantle, Australia 125077, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    8. Takeshima, Hiroyuki, 2014. "Importance of rice research and development in rice seed policies: Insights from Nigeria:," IFPRI discussion papers 1343, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    9. Megan Mucioki & Bernard Pelletier & Timothy Johns & Lutta W. Muhammad & Gordon M. Hickey, 2018. "On developing a scale to measure chronic household seed insecurity in semi-arid Kenya and the implications for food security policy," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 10(3), pages 571-587, June.
    10. Farrington, J., 2011. "Stabilizing and Improving Livelihoods in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situations (FCAS) – the Search for Frameworks and Evidence," Sri Lankan Journal of Agricultural Economics, Sri Lanka Agricultural Economics Association (SAEA), vol. 12, pages 1-17.
    11. J.P.B. Lillesø & C. Harwood & Abayneh Derero & L. Graudal & J. M. Roshetko & R. Kindt & S. Moestrup & W. O. Omondi & N. Holtne & A. Mbora & P. van Breugel & I. K. Dawson & R. Jamnadass & H. Egelyng, 2018. "Why institutional environments for agroforestry seed systems matter," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 36(S1), pages 89-112, March.
    12. Nordhagen, Stella & Pascual, Unai, 2013. "The Impact of Climate Shocks on Seed Purchase Decisions in Malawi: Implications for Climate Change Adaptation," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 238-251.
    13. repec:fpr:export:1343 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Sperling, Louise & McGuire, Shawn J., 2010. "Persistent myths about emergency seed aid," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 195-201, June.
    15. Sperling, Louise & Louwaars, Niels & de Ponti, Orlando & Smale, Melinda & Baributsa, Dieudonne & van Etten, Jacob, 2020. "Viewpoint: COVID-19 and seed security response now and beyond," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 97(C).
    16. Langyintuo, Augustine S. & Setimela, Peter, 2009. "Assessing the effectiveness of a technical assistance program: The case of maize seed relief to vulnerable households in Zimbabwe," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 377-387, August.

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