Ensuring High-Quality Seed for Sudanese Farmers
High-quality seed is a prerequisite for the satisfactory production of a good quality crop. Strict quality control is essential to ensure high quality standards. In collaboration with the Seed Development Project of the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) organized two courses on ‘Field Inspection Methodologies and Its Application’ and ‘Seed Quality Testing’ for participants from the National Seed Administration (NSA) of Sudan. The course was organized in collaboration with the Central Administration for Seed Certification and Testing (CASC) in Cairo, Egypt from 10-14 April 2016.
The objective of the course was to train technical staff of NSA in theoretical, technical and practical aspects of seed field inspection and laboratory seed testing as well as the organization and management of seed certification scheme for an efficient and effective service delivery for seed producers and users in the country. A total of 18 participants, including eight women from eight states of Sudan attended the course. A participant from Nile Sun Enterprises, a private company, also attended the course. Participants found the training course highly beneficial, particularly their interaction and sharing of experiences with colleagues from Egypt.
The seed quality control program monitors the entire seed program and ensures that all operations i.e., production, processing, storage, marketing and distribution are carried out in an appropriate manner to maintain the prescribed seed quality standards. Field inspection, control plots and laboratory seed testing are the main components of the overall quality control system. They assess the value of seed for varietal and physical purity, germination capacity, vigor, health, etc.
This training course will enhance the capacity of staff at NSA and farmers in Sudan will be able to access quality seed. Regional seed courses like these, organized with trained staff and facilities of the national program, are evidence that ICARDA’s long-term association with the seed sector in Egypt, including the establishment of CASC, is paying high dividends.