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Maize seed variety selection and seed system development: the case of southern Africa

Code: 9781838791186
Peter S. Setimela, Global Maize Program, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Zimbabwe

Chapter synopsis: Maize is the most important staple food crop in southern Africa. It is predominantly grown by smallholder farmers, but seed companies generally target large commercial farmers in high potential areas when developing new varieties. To address the needs of smallholder farmers in maize genetic improvement, the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre (CIMMYT) initiated a collaborative drought and low nitrogen maize breeding programme aimed to increase yields in low-input and drought-prone environments in southern Africa. Since then, CIMMYT and seed companies have also introduced new maize varieties which are resistant to a variety of biotic and abiotic stresses. This chapter reviews key activities and the roles of key stakeholders in improving maize productivity for smallholder farmers in southern Africa. It also highlights the development and selection of first-generation maize germplasm, and the role of the seed industry in disseminating improved maize germplasm.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2016.0002.03
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Maize variety development in southern Africa (SA) 3 Maize seed industries 4 The development of maize seed systems in SA 5 The adoption of modern maize varieties 6 Conclusions and future trends 7 Where to look for further information 8 References

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