Africa's agriculture and value addition magazine

Consider drought tolerant seed varieties, farmers urged

Posted in Technology, Research & Innovation

ZAMBIA – In the wake of climate change, the Zambia Seed Company has urged farmers to plant high yielding seed varieties that are being developed locally and have a strong tolerance to diseases and droughts to enable them get a good harvest.

In an interview recently, Zamseed marketing manager Zack Musonda says the company which started operations in 1980 was initially dependant on Mount Makulu Research Institute to develop its seed varieties.

“In 2002, we embarked on a reposition exercise that resulted in establishing an in-house research and seed production centre near Kabangwe area in Lusaka, and so far, eight varieties have been developed with a code ZMS that has replaced the previous MM code depicting Mount Makulu,” he said.

He said Zamseed is competing favourably with foreign seed companies that have entered the local market.

“We have a strong research centre and our product profile is wide. Apart from maize seeds, we also produce wheat, sunflower, soyabeans, groundnuts, cassava cuttings, cowpeas. The products we offer are locally bred and have undergone series of trials for adaptability countrywide and in the region,” Mr Musonda said.

He said Zamseed is aiming to consolidate its local and regional market share.

“We have depots that hold up to 1,500 tonnes in strategic areas across the country and we have branches in Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Namibia and we are exporting to Zimbabwe, Malawi, Kenya and Botswana,” he said.

September 4, 2015; https://www.daily-mail.co.zm/?p=41756