How we improve small scale growers’ access to healthy productive seeds in order to feed a growing world.
Most of the world’s farmers are smallholders on less than two hectares of land. Despite producing over 80% of the food consumed in parts of the developing world, they often lack the high quality seeds and inputs needed for a healthy harvest. Empowering smallholders to protect their crops from pests, disease and climate pressures represent an important part of the solution to achieve a world free from poverty and hunger, major aims of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
Empowering smallholders through access to seeds
As one of the world’s largest seed producers, we develop innovative seed breeding technologies that can unlock the potential of smallholders and growers around the world. The global reach of our seeds business allows us to deliver an extraordinary range of benefits to smallholders so they can be more productive, better manage risks such as drought and disease, and grow crops more sustainably – using less arable land, less water and fewer inputs. Through seed innovations such as breeding hybrid varieties and genetically modifying plants, we produce seeds that grow more uniform and vigorous crops, with increased resistance to stress, disease and pests. But in order for our seeds to bring maximum value to smallholders, we have to work proactively to improve their access to seeds through outreach, innovative partnerships and an understanding of their barriers to seed markets.
2019 Access to Seeds Index
We were recently ranked #2 out of 13 companies in the 2019 Access to Seeds Index, which “measures and compares the efforts of the world’s leading seed companies to enhance the productivity of smallholder farmers.” The index underscores the important role seeds producers have in helping smallholder farmers gain access to seeds to support their livelihoods while feeding a growing world population.