Technical experts of about 20 rice seed companies are expected to be trained on the production and marketing of hybrid rice seeds as part of an overall drive to boost rice production in West Africa. Holding in the Senegalese city of Saint Louis from September 2-6, 2019, this capacity building activity will bring together companies from Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Niger, Nigeria, and Senegal.
The workshop is funded by the Partnership for Agricultural Research, Education and Development (PAIRED), a USAID-funded initiative implemented by CORAF, and AfricaRice within the framework of the Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT Rice Compact) funded by the African Development Bank.
Rice demand is on the increase in West Africa and across Africa. Political leaders and development partners are in a continuous search for means and ways of raising production to meet demand. Experts argue that the hybrid version of rice can increase production with lasting positive impacts on the food security of the region.
Since the launch of the AfricaRice hybrid rice program in 2010, many high-yielding hybrid varieties have been developed in several African countries. For example, in Senegal, the aromatic hybrid rice variety (AR051H) was released in 2017 by the Senegalese Institute of Agricultural Research under the name ISRIZ 09.
This Saint Louis training will actively engage private seed companies to work with the public research institution to promote the development, production as well as the dissemination of hybrid rice.
At the end of this meeting, an action plan for hybrid seed production will be developed to promote the adoption of the technology in the various countries of the region.