International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

BSF Project - Fourth Cycle

National Community Seed Bank Platform for Strengthening Informal Seed System in Ethiopia
Where will we work?
This Benefit-sharing project addresses food security and resilience to climate change in different agro-ecological zones of Ethiopia, across several regional states. It will strengthen the work of nearly thirty community seed banks (CSBs), as a crucial aspect of the informal seed system which meets over 90% of the national seed demand and thereby underwrites livelihoods and food security.

What will we do?
  • Establish a national platform of Community Seed Banks (CSBs) in Ethiopia that will support existing CSBs and their networks in different agro-ecological zones of Ethiopia;
  • Exchange, develop further, and scale out CSB activities and achievements;
  • Network and train farming households in different agro-ecological zones on quality seed production from planning to storage;
  • Promote, re-introduce, conserve and disseminate locally adapted farmers’ varieties with farmers’ participation;
  • Characterize, phenotype, evaluate, document, pre-breed crop varieties for traits of importance to climate change adaptation and resilience;
  • Targeted capacity building of researchers, extension agents, national focal points, government workers and technicians.

What is expected to be achieved?
This project will support farmers to sustainably use and conserve plant genetic resources for food and agriculture. The CSB platform it will establish will enable exchange on technical CSB management as well as sustainable business models across different agroecological zones. Through a variety of activities, the project will diversify local agricultural systems, promote cultivation of adapted farmers’ varieties of cereals, pulses and other important crops. It will also enable the co-development and transfer of tool packages (germplasm, information and technologies), contribute to the Global Information System of the International Treaty and strengthen national information systems of PGRFA. Participatory varietal selection (PVS) will be rolled out across the various nodes of the national platform, building capacity for farmers, researchers, development agents and others.

Who will benefit?
10,000 farming households and the project partner institutions, including national and regional agricultural research institutions, governmental organisations and conservation NGOs will benefit from project implementation. Experts, researchers, development extension workers, policy makers and technicians will benefit from targeted training. The project will ensure that 50% of beneficiaries at all levels are women.
Barley, Chickpea, Faba Bean / Vetch, Finger Millet, Oat, Plaintain/Banana, Sorghum, Wheat
Region: Africa
Target Countries: Ethiopia
Implementing institution: Ethiopian Biodiversity Institute (EBI)

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