UPDATE: Agency unveils SEEDCODEX to checkmate substandard seeds

Ene Okwanihe, Abuja

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The National Agricultural Seeds Council, the agency responsible for regulating and ensuring that farmers get access to quality seeds in Nigeria has unveiled the SEEDCODEX to checkmate substandard seeds in the country.

The SEEDCODEX is a short messaging code system where farmers can scratch a foil tag on their seed packs and text it to a particular code also on the seed packs to verify the authenticity of the seed.

The 1392 code is easy to access by farmers and available to all mobile networks in the country.

The platform captures all registered seed companies certified by the National Agricultural Seed Council in the country.

It was developed to address fake and adulterated seeds in circulation in the country which has been a huge source of worry for farmers and government alike..

While unveiling the platform the Director General of the agency Dr. Philip Ojo said the agency had to dig deep and sort ways to nip the situation in the bud.

This he said led the agency to partner different stakeholders like USAID, AGRA, Mpedigree and a host of others to develop and unveil the platform that allows farmers access to quality seeds by verifying the authenticity of the seed they buy called the SEEDCODEX.

We are doing this today, to assure Nigerian farmers and everybody that the seed council and the seed industry in Nigeria is actually ready to go along particularly with global best practices”

“We want to ensure that farmers get good products, the best genetic are made available for farmers and they must be materials that have been authenticated by the seed council” he added.

Farmers’ interest

Dr. Ojo further disclosed that the platform will be fully operational and accessible to farmers in the country in the next farming season.

The National president of All Farmers Association of Nigeria Architect Kabiru Ibrahim said it was time for Nigeria to accentuate its place in food production in Africa by taking the lead in ensuring that the right seeds are used to in agriculture.

He the association appreciates the efforts of the agency and that the association is ready to work with the agency to help Nigeria attain food security.

The official unveiling is in line with the President Muhammadu Buhari’s plan to ensure farmers get access to quality inputs thereby achieving Food Security in the country.