Farmers urged to use certified seed

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Farmers urged to use certified seed

Isoka, 28 November, 2014, ZANIS …The Seed Control and Certification Institute (SCCI) has called on small scale farmers in Isoka and Nakonde districts in Muchinga province to strictly use certified seed from recognized seed dealers.

The call is from the Seed Inspector  Francis Malasha from the Seed Control and Certification Institute based at Misamfu Regional Research Centre in Kasama, Northern Province, in an interview with the National Agricultural Information Services (NAIS)  yesterday.

This was during the illegal seed awareness and sensitization campaign conducted in Nakonde and Isoka districts.

Mr. Malasha revealed that the objective of the exercise was looking at the four forms of illegal seed dealings namely selling seed without the seed sellers license and selling fake seed coated with coloring substance in pre-packs.

Others are selling expired seed which has lost viability to germinate and illegal importation of seed from neighboring countries without the importation permit, contrary to the Seed Act, Cap 236 of the laws of Zambia.

Mr. Malasha said that all seed dealers should possess the required documents before going into the seed trading as doing without them will attract prosecution.

Mr. Malasha also disclosed that he renewed seed seller’s licenses for Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU), Nakonde District Cooperative Union (NDCU) who were using expired licenses and suspended a license for Lekanga General Dealers also of Nakonde.

He further confiscated about 103 kgs of maize seed from illegal seed dealers in Isoka and Nakonde.

The seed inspector has since urged farmers to desist from obtaining seed from unrecognized dealers as they risk buying fake seed which will not germinate, adding that they should ensure that they plant geniune seed for the them to have a good harvest.

Mr. Malasha also cautioned seed dealers to follow right procedures when dealing in the seed industry.