Okwe Obi, Abuja
The Federal Government has said it is partnering with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) to develop an application called Cassava Seed Tracker designed to transform analogue certification system to a digital system.
Director General, National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), Dr. Olusegun Ojo, disclosed the partnership recently, in Abuja.
According to him, “This app has all our current process digitalised and make real time reporting of cassava seed field certification possible.
“It also serves as a platform for stakeholder interaction and enhance accessibility of cassava stem cuttings and tubers. We are already working on scaling up this system and will soon introduce a National Seed Tracker for all crops,” he noted.
Ojo also stated that Nigeria has become a member of the International Seed Training Association (ISTA), an organisation based in Switzerland.
“Nigeria is now a member of the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) and we have made tremendous progress with the issue of becoming a member of the International Union for the Protection of Plant Varieties (UPOV).”
He further disclosed that government support of the activities of the National Variety Release Committee has “led to the release of about 21 varieties of crops including rice, maize, sorghum, cotton, cassava amongst others.
“Worthy of mentioning are the two flood tolerant rice varieties released by the NVRC and these two varieties are part of the rice seed fields that stakeholders will be visiting today,” he added.
Also, Dr. Lava Kumar of IITA called on stakeholders in agriculture to collaborate with the government to ensure that sustainable seeds system contribute to the production of more crops.