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Zaka Super Seeds Satellite Seed Testing Laboratory and Revolving Fund
Zaka, Zimbabwe
10 August 2012


FANRPAN under the Harmonised Seed Security Project (HaSSP) and together with the implementing partners, GRM International, have set up a smallholder community seed company called Zaka Super Seeds in Zaka District in Zimbabwe. This company is managed by an APEX which is made up of Chairpersons of Ward Committees.

Seed deliveries are progressing very well at the Zaka Super Seeds warehouse. To date the following seed quantities have been delivered:
  • Cowpeas (CBC2 and CBC3) 2,907kg
  • Rice (Nerica 3 and 7) 1,067kg
  • Sugar Beans (Gloria and Nua45) 1,409kg
  • Maize Open Pollinated Varieties (OPVs) - (ZM309, ZM401 and ZM721) 9,937kg
  • Sorghum (SV4) 230kg
As the seed is delivered, samples for purity and germination tests are withdrawn and sent to the satellite laboratory that has been set up with the help of Seed Analysts from Seed Services. 17 farmers were trained to conduct the purity and germination tests. Once the results are known and are above the minimum prescribed for the crop, i.e. 90% for seed maize, the famer payments are processed. This is a good strategy to encourage farmers to deliver early and avoid side marketing and must be shared as best practice across the pilot countries namely Malawi, Swaziland and Zambia.

The growers will be paid according to the rates indicated in Table 3 below: Table 3: Estimated and planned seed production quantities and costs for 2012

Product Raw Seed (mt) Producer Price US$
Cowpeas 5.0 0.70
Rice 5.0 0.75
Maize ZM309 5.0 0.60
Maize ZM401 8.0 0.60
Maize ZM721 2.0 0.60
Sugar beans 10.0 1.00
Total 35.0


Zaka Super Seeds set up a revolving account specifically for paying the seed farmers. The revolving fund is used for the sole purpose of procuring seed from farmers. After selling processed seed, the money generated will be returned to this account. This money will form the basis of the strength of the community seed company as it makes it possible to retain growers from year after year as they are assured of timely payments. The main objective of this account and fund is to make sure Zaka Super Seeds is sustainable and all funds are not spent as long as they are not profits. Good management of this fund will ensure sustainability even with the absence of funding from HaSSP and SAMP. This innovative way should be shared with other pilot countries as it will ensure sustainability beyond the project lifespan.

All the seed received was fumigated with Gastoxin tablets for seven days to control weevil infestation.

Germination counts - Zaka Super Seeds Satellite Lab
Germination counts - Zaka Super Seeds Satellite Lab
Nelson Munyaka in the satellite lab
Nelson Munyaka in the satellite lab
Rice seed sample - Zaka, Zimbabwe
Rice seed sample - Zaka, Zimbabwe
Zaka Super Seeds seed storage warehouse
Zaka Super Seeds seed storage warehouse

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