Nigeria: Seed Council opens training on Plant Variety Protection (PVP)

Nigeria: Seed Council opens training on Plant Variety Protection

By Aghan Daniel I [email protected]

A three-day event by the National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC) of Nigeria, seeking to sensitize the seed sector on Plant Variety Protection has opened today in Abuja.

The purpose of this training course which ends on August 12, is to provide the practical skills to effectively implement the Plant Variety Protection System (PVP System) in Nigeria.

The training has been organized in collaboration with CORAF.

In his opening remarks while opening the meeting, Dr. Yacouba Diallo, Senior Seed Expert at CORAF said that currently, the region is noted for lagging behind other regions in Africa in the use of improved seeds estimated at around 25% of crop land. 

In that context, he added that it is imperative to provide farmers with improved high yielding varieties which are adopted to climate change.

Dr. Philip Ojo, the Director General of National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), while giving his official opening remarks noted that Nigeria is one of the few countries in Africa with a legal framework for the protection of plant breeders. He noted that studies in Kenya, Morocco, Tunisia and South Africa have clearly shown that the importance of having such legal framework in place such as increased investment in plant breeding, increase in the number of breeders and breeding entities, access to foreign trade in varieties etc.

“To ensure that farmers have access to quality seeds for optimal farm productivity and to bridge the yield gap, we need a successful plant breeding system, but sustained and long-term breeding efforts are only worthwhile if there is a possibility for plant breeders and breeding institution to be rewarded for their investment made,” added Dr Diallo.

In a speech read on his behalf by Aghan Daniel, AFSTA Secretary General, Justin Rakotoarisaona said that Africa is already late in implementing PVP laws, and this is causing food security challenges. He called on African governments to create conducive business environments that will lead to introduction of agricultural technologies and high-yielding varieties.

About 40 participants from private seed companies, plant breeders from public and private sector, NASC PVP Office and other  public organizations  presently working or will be in the near future working  in the field of the Plant Variety Protection (PVP); examination, growing test, Test Guidelines elaboration, legal departments in the agricultural industry, etc. in west Africa francophone countries.

The Specific objectives are:

  • A better understanding of the PVP System in compliance with UPOV convention ;
  • A better understanding of the importance of the PVP system on seed variety and seed business and variety development.
  • the method of DUS testing;
  • A better understanding of method of Test Guidelines composition;
  • Sharing experiences and successful models applicable in West Africa.

the NASC PVP Office in Nigeria. We will be organizing a PVP meeting in collaboration with CORAF and other partners in Abuja from the 10th to 12th of August 2022.