USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub attended an awareness-raising workshop convened by the Zambia Seed Trade Association (ZASTA) to inform key personnel in seed companies of the harmonized seed regulations and measures in the SADC Region and to encourage participants to implement the regulations. The workshop was designed to simplify the information available in order to increase participation and regional seed release registration on the SADC Seed Center Catalogue, which is being supported by the Trade Hub.
The harmonized seed regulations were approved by SADC member states on July 7, 2013 to ensure more varieties become available for smallholder farmers across borders in an efficient and transparent manner. The three technical agreements finalized and approved by SADC members relate to seed variety release, seed certification and quality assurance, and quarantine and phytosanitary measures for seed. It is anticipated that at least 40 new varieties will become available on the SADC catalogue in the near future.
The SADC Seed Centre provided an update on progress and status of implementation, and the Director of the Seed Control and Certification Institute (SCCI) chaired the workshop.
Photo: A seed company participant asks a question at the ZASTA workshop