Online seed bank to help farmers select varieties suitable for specific areas

Farmers sowing seed at the beginning of a planting season. A new online seed bank known as Mbeguchoice will assist farmers in selecting the right seeds for specific climatic conditions. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Mbeguchoice allows farmers and local seed sellers to access a list of suitable seed varieties for specific weather conditions and soils for their areas.
  • Currently, the online database contains over 200 commercialised crop varieties, including 61 varieties of maize, 25 of common bean, 11 of cassava, 13 of Irish potato, and 12 of sorghum.
  • In the past, farmers have relied on trial-and-error methods and take years before getting the right seeds, leading to massive losses and poor harvests.
  • The database will also ensure that only certified seeds are on the market and that unscrupulous seed vendors will be locked.

For the first time, farmers in Kenya will be able to select the right kind of seeds for specific local conditions after the government launched an online ‘seed bank’.

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