AFSTA is the apex seed organization, which has for the past 22 years, effectively promoted the development of the African seed sector in general and the private seed industry in particular. Among other things, the Association has continued having a large footprint in the African seed industry and leading from the front through key achievements below:
- AFSTA is registered in Kenya as an international organization with diplomatic status in Kenya where it is headquartered with its own office;
- Currently there are 120 members from Africa and beyond composed of National Seed Trade Associations. private seed companies and agricultural research Centers;
- Successfully implemented 14 long-term seed projects with the latest being on “Creating Awareness on Biotechnology and Plant Breeding Innovations” as well as the one on “leveraging the seed industry to accelerate adoption and varietal turnover” in Uganda and Malawi;
- For the last eight years, AFSTA has published The African Seed Magazine, which covers topical issues on seed trade and production in the continent;
- Since its inception AFSTA has continued to share with its members the AFSTA E-review that is distributed Quarterly
- AFSTA also boasts of a very vibrant website which has almost 9 million visitors since establishment in 2019;
- Established effective committees namely “Member Services and Partnership”, “West Africa”, “Plant Biotechnology Communication”, “Plant Breeding Innovation” and “Communication and Advocacy”;
- Organized 22 successful annual congresses since 2000, which have proved to be excellent trade and networking forums;
- Setting up and strengthening 27 National Seed Trade Associations (NSTAs) in Africa.
- Development and adopting of nine position papers on various important topics for the seed sector;
- Strengthening the capacity of AFSTA members through training on key issues such as agribusiness management, seed technology, communication on modern biotechnology. advocacy techniques, financial management and seed trade associations’ management, etc.;
- Supporting the implementation of harmonized seed regulations and policies in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), the East African Community (EAC) and in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS);
- Recognition by intergovernmental organizations such as the African Union (AU), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the East African Community (EAC);
- Recognition by international seed bodies such as the International Seed Federation (ISF), the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) etc.;
- AFSTA is Strategic partner of the African organizations in charge of the Plant Variety Protection such as the African Regional Property Organization (ARIPO) and African Intellectual Property Organization (OAPI) for the promotion of the Plant Variety Protection in the continent.
The first inaugural AFSTA Congress was held in Lilongwe, Malawi in April 1999. Thereafter, the congresses have been held as follows;
Egypt (2001); Senegal (2002); Kenya (2003); Tunisia (2004), Cameroon (2005); Uganda (2006); Zambia (2007); Morocco (2008); South Africa (2009); Mali (2010); Malawi (2011), Zanzibar (2012) and Mauritius (2013), Tunisia (2014), Zimbabwe (2015), Kenya (2016), Senegal (2017), Egypt (2018), Kenya (2019), Zambia (2020), Kenya (2021), Tunisia (2022). In 2023, the Congress will be held in Senegal from March 6 to 8, 2023.