Role of Local Seeds for Seed and Nutrition Security
For any country to develop, there is need to have its people in perfect health condition, as they say “Health is wealth”; for this to be realised, there is need for promotion of local crop varieties which have stood the test of time and are easily adaptable to climate change to ensure seed security.
Seed security can be looked at as a situation where farmers are certain, year after year, to obtain on time the quality and quantity of seed necessary to fulfil their production plans, and it has two important attributes namely the availability of and access to quality seed.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) seeds are the primary basis for human sustenance. The aim of household seed security is to help improve and strengthen the household food production capacity thus enabling farmers to retain seed of their preferred local varieties.
Seeds are the repository of the genetic potential of crop species and their varieties resulting from the continuous improvement and selection over time.
CTDT strives to work with selected rural communities of Zambia in the promotion of local crop varieties in not only preserving the dwindling local seeds but also improving nutrition in these communities.
Local seeds offer a readily available source of nutrition in rural communities that are not only grappling with the changing climatic conditions but also the increased economic volatility as well as the covid-19 pandemic which has worsened the situation.
Crop improvement and delivery of high-quality seeds and planting materials of selection varieties to growers is necessary for ensuring improved crop production and meeting growing environmental challenges.
Food security therefore is dependent on the seed security in the farming communities.