It’s Illegal to Sell Seeds, Planting Materials without Seedcodex Tag by NASC—Bankole

May 16, 2022
seedcodex tag

By Dipo Olowookere

Those who sell seeds or planting materials to farmers without a Seedcodex authentication tag risk being punished for violating the law if they do not desist from such an act.

According to the chief agricultural officer at the National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), Mr Osho Bankole, it is an offence not to subject seeds to a quality assurance process in Nigeria.

The Seedcodex label is a mark of quality assurance technology designed to eliminate adulterated seeds from the market in order to make farmers have productive yields.

The system is backed by law through the National Agricultural Seeds Act No 21 of 2019.

Speaking on April 26, 2022, at a webinar themed The Seedcodex: Improved Seed Quality Assurance Providing Farmers Value for Money, Mr Bankole admitted that though the initiative has a few challenges, its implementation has improved food production of the nation as farmers have quality seeds to plant.

“All seeds, after meeting the certification standards, must have a Seedcodex tag before it is traded in the market,” the expert said during his keynote presentation titled Implementation of Seedcodex in Nigeria: Current Status and Ambitions.

He further said, “It is an offence punishable by law as contained in the National Agricultural Seeds Act No 21 of 2019 to market seeds/planting materials without the affixation of the Seedcodex tag issued by NASC after going through the prescribed quality assurance processes.”

Corroborating his point, the country manager for Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Dr Kehinde Makinde, who was represented by the programme officer for AGRA Nigeria, Dr Esther Ibrahim, emphasised that a viable seed system is required to increase the productivity of farmers.

She noted that there is a need for strategic collaboration to ensure compliance as the Seedcodex technology is a quality assurance tool capable of ridding the market of adulterated seeds.

While describing his on-field experience of using Seedcodex, the managing director of Premier Seeds, Mr Ibitoye Oyewale, described the technology as an instant evidence-based instrument.

“Once the farmers scratch off the code and send it to 1393, the authenticity of the seeds purchased is confirmed. The technology gives the farmers assurance and enhances the credibility of the seeds which discourages counterfeiting of seeds,” he stated.

Business Post gathered that the event, which was anchored by a food security expert, Mr Ekum Ojogu, was attended by several stakeholders in the industry, including the director-general of NASC, Dr Philip Ojo; the senior seed advisor at Wageningen University and Research, Dr Marja Thijssen; the seed inspector at Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (KEPHIS), Mrs Caroline Kavu; and the Market Lead Strategist at mPedigree Limited Kenya, Mr Timothy Maina, amongst others.

Dipo Olowookere

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

Mr Olowookere can be reached via [email protected]

Leave a Reply

FBN Holdings
Previous Story

FBN Holdings Calms Nerves Amid Agitations for FY 2021 Results

Bolaji Owasanoye
Next Story

Curbing Illicit Financial Flows Needs Global Framework—Owasanoye

Latest from Economy

Don't Miss