Early Generation Seed

Problem: Early Generation seed (EGS) is the critical link between product development and commercialization. And yet despite its importance, commercial seed producers’ lack of consistent, timely access to clean, true-to-type early generation seed of demanded varieties is a primary bottleneck that constrains the evolution of agricultural value chains in East, West, South, and Central Africa.

Vision of a healthy system: Public sector provides consistent funding for researcher and seed production unit salaries and benefits, consumables, and facility upkeep such as office space, fields, labs, and acclimatized storage. Public sector organization assumes the responsibility and risk of parental seed demand planning and production; attentive cost management and pre-ordering of EGS by commercial seed producers supports the organization’s ability to recover an increasing proportion of its operating costs. Commercial seed producers are aware of newly released varieties (and late stage breeding lines) and the differentiated characteristics of each. Sufficient parent seed is available of the right varieties and at the right time and cost to supply current forecasted producer and end-user demand, and ensure buffer stocks for resilience.

Basis of Comparison: EGS production systems in low middle-income countries (India & Bangladesh), upper middle-income countries (Brazil), and  high-income countries (US and Canada)

Assessment goal: To increase awareness of EGS production and distribution ideals, to help identify EGS supply and quality deficiencies, and to identify costed interventions that enable bottlenecks to be overcome, recognizing and building upon current initiatives underway.

Strategic Objectives

*Common assessment area, but more tailored to seed production and distribution

Discussion of Analysis / Outputs

Results will generate:

  • EGS production and distribution summary on a variety level
  • EGS production cost on a crop level
  • Seed production infrastructure and resources by producer

Scoring: Likert score

Impact Potential of Insights:

  • Highlights strengths and areas for improvement within EGS production system
  • Informs public research centers on recommendations to support resource allocation decisions and investment requirements
  • Provides high leverage intervention options for donors/investors

Final report to synthesize all of these elements and to outline high-level costed intervention options