Ruanda: Shortage of seed inspectors leads to potato seeds scarcity
Rwanda needs about 35,000 tons of quality potato seeds to cover 25 percent of total cultivated land in each growing season. The targeted quantity to fill the existing gap is 60 percent despite persisting challenges.
Experts revealed that a small number of seed inspectors as a major challenge that hampers this target as only 5 out of 25 certified seeds is covered at the moment.
Placide Rukundo, a researcher in charge of potato seeds in Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB) said that challenges are still observed as certified seeds are still under 5 percent while they target to have over 60 percent. “By covering 25% of land for potato production, we can sustain the potato industry in Rwanda.”
He said that there are only less than 10 seed inspectors countrywide and it also hampers the progress to have enough quality potato seeds. Potato seed experts have met in Kigali last Friday 18th October 2019 in a workshop to share experience in seed production and seek solutions that aim to promote the seed sector system in Rwanda.
These experts include the International Potato Center (CIP), RAB, the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources and more.