Potato seed system in Ethiopia: challenges, opportunities, and leverage points

Mezgebu Getnet, Akalu Teshome, Herman Snel, Dawit Alemu, Atsede Solomon (Contributor), Manamino Workayehu (Contributor), Bekele Kebede (Contributor), Mukerem Elias (Contributor), Setegn Gebeyehu (Contributor), Kasaye Negash (Contributor), Bulti Tesso (Contributor), Agdew Bekele (Contributor), Nasir Siraj (Contributor), Mohammed Hassena (Contributor)

    Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional


    Potato is a crucial crop for food security and income for many smallholders in Ethiopia. Past experiences and recent local level assessments have shown that the seed potato system is operating under complex challenges that can be characterized by utilization of low-quality seed potato dominantly depending on the informal seed system, which frequently results in low yield. The complexity of the seed system requires an understanding of both national and sub-national contexts as well as the analysis of the nature of local level constraints and opportunities. This has led to the need for detailed stakeholder discussions to systematically analyze and explore opportunities for improved functioning of the potato seed system. Recognizing the significant efforts and experiences of various national and international actors supporting the potato sector along the value chain in Ethiopia, SWR-RAISE-FS organized a workshop in which knowledge partners and other stakeholders shared their insights about the seed potato system from the perspective of the experiences and competence areas. Through discussion and an interactive process, key challenges and opportunities to transform the Ethiopian seed potato sector were identified. Subsequently, the challenges, opportunities and leverage points were systematically analyzed using the integrated sector and food system transformation framework and recommendations were pointed out where investments in research and development could generate positive impacts. The analysis highlights that the limited functioning of the seed potato sector can be explained by poor performance and inefficiencies in the areas of i) production, ii) value addition and distribution, iii) utilization, iv) service provision, v) stakeholders’ organization and collaboration, vi) coordination, and vii) funding of the seed potato sector. The combination of these factors is affecting the seed potato sector outcomes including the development of the varietal portfolio, as well as the use, stability, accessibility, and availability of healthy seed potato for potato producer farmers. Consequently, main leverage points are identified including (i) development and delivery of new varieties, (ii) production of early generation seed potato, (iii) multiplication of clean potato seed and proper storage, (iv) system for quality assurance, (v) enhance functioning of seed marketing and (vi) strengthening collaboration and coordination between relevant stakeholders. Key recommendations related to the leverage points as well as the implications for sector and food systems performance are identified and presented in this document.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationAddis Ababa
    PublisherStichting Wageningen Research Ethiopia
    Number of pages21
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

    Publication series

    NameRAISE-FS-working paper


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