Understanding and Assessing Rice Seed Systems


This two-week training course is in response to the request of the International Cooperation and Development Fund (ICDF) of Taiwan. The course builds on the three-week training program offered at IRRI Headquarters in August 2016, titled, “Seed and Extension Capacity”, which focused on seed production and post-harvest, overview of seed systems, and with emphasis on skills development for extension. This training course focuses on building knowledge on the rice seed systems with a regional focus for South and Central America. By attending this course, participants would be able to develop a better understanding about the seed systems and their components, the linkages with policy initiatives, and how these can contribute to a robust national seed framework that meets the growing demand for seeds of rice producers. Participants are expected to become more familiar with the requirements of a sustainable seed system. In many cases, a wide range of issues and concerns befall one country’s seed system which may include, among others, bottlenecks in production of quality seeds, inefficient distribution system, lack of quality assurance, and concerns with seed policy on support mechanisms such as production inputs, credit and market linkages. 

This training course tackles these concerns along with different components and requirements of a good seed system.  Participants will have the opportunity to assess their own systems and country scenarios, and to learn from each other as well as from the invited resource speakers. Participants will also be exposed to the work, facilities, mandate of the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and the Latin American Fund for Irrigated Rice (FLAR) based in Cali, Colombia. The first week of the training course will be based at the CIAT Headquarters near Cali; while the second week will be learning experiences through visits and knowledge-exchanges in key rice production region near Ibague, Colombia.


At the end of the training course, participants are expected to:
    1. Be more familiar with the work, mandate, and facilities of CIAT/FLAR, and rice seed production systems in Colombia, South America;
    2. Have enhanced knowledge of the breeding requirements, principles and practices of quality seed production (seed-to-seed) and processes;
    3. Have a better understanding of the requirements for quality seed production for seed sectors;
    4. Understand the key elements of seed policy in relation to seed systems, including familiarity with functions, components, and underlying principles; and
    5. Enhance skills to assess and report on the overall seed system and components.
    • Participants will include ICDF personnel and participants from the rice seed sector of South America.