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Dec 28, 2011

Mozambique's Seed Sector Strengthened With FAO & EU Aid

On 28 December 2011 the FAO reported that the key to increasing agricultural production in Mozambique was increasing the quality of seed production.  The FAO believes that Mozambique has the "potential to feed itself, owing to its abundant and largely unexploited land and water resources."

According to Mahomed Valá, National Director of Agrarian Services (DNSA) at Mozambique's Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG), local food prices tracked closely with the global surge in food prices in 2007-2008.  To combat this, in 2008, the European Union (EU) launched its €1 billion "Food Facility" initiative.  Mozambique was targeted to receive €7.3 million of this funding, with special emphasis placed on strengthening the national seed sector.

Between 2008-2010, the European Union Food Facility (EUFF) and the FAO coordinated their efforts to fund 15 seed companies and approximately 1,000 small-scale seed growers in 11 of Mozambique's provinces.  The result - an estimated 3,500 tons of certified maize, rice, bean, soybeans and sunflower seeds. Funds are currently being directed to five seed laboratories and training several hundred technical staffers regarding seed quality control.

Yields have been impressive.  Yet, increased productivity has not yet offset Mozambique's yearly deficit of approximately 1 million tons of food aid.

For more see: "Mozambique: Better seeds for better crops," FAO Press Release, 28 December 2011.

About Margaret

CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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