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New Competition: Seeds for Impact


Globally the provision and adoption of improved seed and planting material for many crops have raised crop productivity and improved the lives of millions of farmers in developing markets; Africa, however, has so far not sufficiently benefited from this productivity increase.

Crop yields in Africa are the lowest in the world, due to limited access to quality inputs especially improved seed varieties suitable for the different climatic conditions and soils. Consequently, Africa now imports up to US $35 billion worth of food annually, an amount that is predicted to increase to US $110 billion by 2025.


The Seeds for Impact competition is an initiative by AECF with initial funding from Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture.

The competition seeks to address the funding gap faced by seed companies in their quest to produce seed for food security crops particularly, publicly-bred varieties. Seeds for Impact competition is part of a 6-year program that aims to make the seed market systems work for smallholder farmers across sub-Sahara Africa.
The program targets private sector companies in 12 countries namely, Nigeria, Ghana, Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, and Mozambique.

The offer: 

  • Funding: Grants and Concessional Loans ranging between US $250,000 to 1.5 million
  • Technical Assistance


What are they looking for?

  • Solutions that improve how the seed market systems work for smallholder farmers

  • Innovative ideas that stimulate and/or enrich/contribute to next-generation approaches in growing Africa’s seed sector, crowding in women and youth (efficiency, productivity, market growth in Africa)

  • Models that seek to scale new, in-demand publicly-bred varieties of food crops (climate-smart and nutrition focus will be considered an advantage. Crops must go beyond hybrid maize).

  • Ability to leverage partnerships that increase the availability of other key inputs necessary for maximizing the benefits of improved seed varieties including farmers’ access to appropriate finance, extension services, technologies, and output markets. 

Seeds for Impact competition is now receiving applications, from 30th October to 11th December 2018.

For more information on the competition, please email [email protected] with a copy to John Kavilu on [email protected]