Demand for Maize Hybrids, Seed Subsidies, and Seed Decisionmakers in Zambia
The successful development and diffusion of improved maize seed in Zambia during the 1970s–80s was a major achievement of African agriculture but was predicated on a government commitment to parastatal grain and seed marketing, the provision of services to maize growers, and a pan-territorial pricing scheme that was fiscally unsustainable. Declining maize output when this system was dismantled contributed to the reinstatement in 2002 of subsidies for maize seed and fertilizer through the Fertilizer and Farmer Input Support Programs (FISP). In the meantime, seed liberalization has led to an array of new, improved maize varieties, most of which are hybrids. This analysis explores the determinants of demand for first-generation (F1) hybrid maize seed in Zambia based on a survey of maize growers during the 2010/11 cropping season.
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