Pop Vriend Seeds

Pop Vriend Vegetable Seeds BV (Pop Vriend Seeds) is a family-owned company founded in 1956. It offers a wide range of open-pollinated and hybrid vegetable seeds that are adapted for tropical and sub-tropical conditions. Pop Vriend Seeds operates in over 100 countries worldwide, particularly in the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia. The company's main crops in Western and Central Africa are tomato, onion and watermelon.

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Western and Central Africa

Summary of results:

Pop Vriend Seeds ranks 13th in the 2019 Index for Western and Central Africa. The company has an extensive distribution network in the region, and it exhibits a decent performance in most measurement areas. It has strengths in Intellectual Property, with policies that favor breeder and smallholder farmer rights alike, and Marketing & Sales, where its quality assurance mechanisms in all its markets meet the standards set by the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA). The company also tailors its packaging to different markets and languages throughout the region. Capacity Building is an area for improvement, as the company’s activities consist solely of partnering with local experts to deliver agronomic training to smallholder farmers.

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Operations in Scope
  • Countries in Scope
  • Company Presence
  • Production Locations
  • Breeding Station/R&D
Index Crops in Portfolio
Sales Seed type Source
bfa cmr tcd civ cod gnq gab gha gnb mli mrt ner nga cog sen sle gmb tgo Hybrid OPV GM Own
from other
Green bean
Green pea
Pepper (hot)
Pepper (sweet)
Leading Practices

    Pop Vriend Seeds has a wide sales presence in Western and Central Africa, with distribution channels in 14 index countries that also reach remote areas.

Areas for Improvement

    Pop Vriend Seeds is encouraged to publicly disclose the full scope of its access to seeds-related activities in Western and Central Africa.

    Although the company has an extensive sales presence in the region, it does not report having any activities to advance the local seed sector. The company is encouraged to employ its regional experience and presence to engage in initiatives to improve the enabling environment for both farmers and the seed sector.

    The company works with a partner in Nigeria to provide extension services, which include product guidance, chemical use and water resource management. The company is encouraged to enhance its capacity building activities and to scale these to more countries where it is active.

Notable Findings

    While Pop Vriend Seeds does not provide monetary or non-monetary contributions within the framework of access and benefit-sharing, it does fund seed collecting missions for the Centre for Genetic Resources (CGN) at Wageningen University & Research, the Netherlands. CGN manages the gene collection that is made available in accordance with the Standard Material Transfer Agreement of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

    The company offers discounts on seed to enable smallholder farmers to trial new varieties. Further, the company makes free samples of its F1 hybrids available for these farmers to try.

    The company refrains from using contractual clauses or other provisions to prohibit use of commercial genetic material for further breeding. Neither does it use contracts or other provisions intended to prevent the practice of farm-saved seed by smallholder farmers in the region.

    Pop Vriend Seeds’ staff, including company breeders, regularly visit variety trial fields in Africa, including in Burkina Faso, Senegal and Cameroon, to inspect the product in the field and receive feedback from local agronomists and smallholder farmers.

    The company ensures that the seed it produces is tested in accordance with ISTA rules, and crops
    prone to cross-pollination are tested to ensure they are free of GMO contamination.

    Pop Vriend Seeds tailors its packages for smallholder farmers using a variety of languages (including English, French and Portuguese) and includes a QR code that directs farmers to variety
    descriptions and planting guides on its website. The company also gives each package a unique batch number that provides information on the origin of the seed and date of sale, allowing the
    product to be tracked and traced.

    The company organizes field days in Nigeria, where smallholder farmers receive sample seed packages and promotional items. Further, the company supports its distributors in other countries when fairs are held by supplying sample packages and promotional items. The company also includes promotional items and giveaways in its shipments to share with smallholder farmers.