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TitleADDRESSING FOOD SECURITY IN AFRICA The plant variety protection system
SubjectFood Security
Date of Publication2017087
PublisherAfrican Community of Practice on Management for Development result at the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF)
Number of Pages14 pages
Geographical CoverageAfrica
KeywordsPlant breeding, Plant variety protection, Small and medium enterprises
AbstractAccording to the latest estimates of the State of Food Insecurity in the World, the prevalence of hunger in the Africa region declined by 30 percent between 1990–1992 and today—from around one person in three to about one in four. This progress largely stems from agricultural productivity gains, based on improved plant varieties and reflecting the Kenyan government’s decision in the early 1990s to invest in new plant varieties and improved production techniques. Kenya’s introduction of plant variety protection (PVP) in 1997 brought many benefits, as recorded over seven years from 1997 to 2004. Multiple varieties were developed and released into the Kenyan market. This case study highlights the benefits of the PVP system—also called “plant breeders’ rights” (PBR)—in meeting global challenges, particularly of climate change and food insecurity, using Kenya’s experience of the PVP system. Key findings. Plant breeding will stay a major contributor to increased food security while reducing input costs, greenhouse gas emissions, and deforestation—mitigating the effects of population growth and climate change, among other stresses. An effective system of PVP is a key enabler for investment in breeding and the development of new varieties of plants. Other gains were stronger public–private plant breeding partnerships, including close relationships with international research institutes, the emergence of new breeding entities such as university researchers and private farmer-breeders, and increased private investment in breeding new plant varieties. Key lessons. During its 50 years of development and application, the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) system has proven effective in encouraging the creation of new varieties of plants and in introducing those varieties into agricultural and horticultural practice. Plant breeding is important for meeting the multiple challenges of a fast-changing world. Improved varieties and high-quality seeds are required for productive agriculture in developing nations. Key recommendations. African countries are strongly encouraged to join UPOV and implement a PVP system for their sustainable agricultural development and maintain the last decades’ agricultural productivity gains, which stemmed from improved plant varieties. African countries are also encouraged to join and strengthen regional systems of PVP such as the Arusha Protocol on Regional Protection of New Varieties of Plants, administered by the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) or the PVP system for African Intellectual Property, based in West Africa for French-speaking countries.
Copyright HolderAfrican Community of Practice (AfCoP)
Copyright URL
Filesize832047 MB
File FormatPDF
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