Seeds are an integral part of agriculture, being the effective and efficient means of crop propagation. Seed sustains life and protects it. It is a very important input for agriculture. Quality seeds are important for crop growth which will satisfy the demand for food to feed the growing population.
Seed technology plays a major role as the potential gained by breeding can be distributed only through seeds. The production, processing, storage, and distribution are the various stages in seed technology.
The nucleus seed is multiplied in a generation system as a breeder, foundation, and certified seed. The nucleus seed needs to be genuine and free from impurities and hence is produced strictly under isolation. The breeder seeds are genetically pure and have good germination properties. In recent times. there has been a lot of turbulence in the seed market, with instances of counterfeiting, contamination, fraud, and mislabeling.
Seed Market and the Challenges
The global seed market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 6.6% to reach a value of USD 86.8 billion by 2026. The ever-increasing population across countries is driving this growth. The farmers also expect to increase their yields and realize profitability in markets. The need for food safety and sustainable agriculture practices is fueling the growth of the seed sector.
- Counterfeit and fake seeds
- Mislabeling of seed packets
- Regulatory offenses
- Low-income farmers not in a position to purchase seeds in bulk
- Tampering with seed bags and adulteration
What is the importance of quality seeds?
Studying and developing seeds that generate stable and resilient crops requires years of research and joint work between farmers, regulatory agencies, and the state to ensure food security.
In India, organisms like The Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare along with seed certification agencies are responsible for encouraging small and large farmers to meet safety and sustainability criteria to feed the local population and meet the basic requirements demanded by international markets.
Therefore, ensuring the creation of quality seeds is a fundamental part of any food system that intends to grow and develop.Eliminate the risk of fake seeds with TraceX real-time traceability solution
What are the benefits of farming with quality seeds?
- The root system development will be more efficient, which will help absorb nutrients effectively and result in higher yields
- Provides the desired crop population
- The capacity to withstand adverse conditions
- Seedlings will be more vigorous, fast-growing, and pests and diseases resistant
- Ensures uniform growth and maturity
How do I know if a seed is of high quality?
Genetic purity: This quality trait is essential to achieve crops for either resistance or desired quality factors. It can be determined by laboratory tests or more traditional methods like grow-out tests. A seed is considered genetically pure when it possesses all the genetic qualities that the breeder has placed in the variety.
Physical Quality: It should be uniform in size, weight, and color and free of stones, leaves, dust, stems, and flowers. It should also be free of seeds of other crops and inert material. This quality character can be obtained with proper cleaning and sorting at the time of assortment and before planting/storage.
Physiological Quality: The physiological quality of the seed can be achieved by the correct choice of seed (mature seed) used for sowing and the care of quality traits during extraction, drying, and storage.
What are the best storage conditions for a good quality seed?
As seeds age, their viability decreases, so the temperature, freshness, humidity, and light levels of the places where they are stored must be closely monitored to ensure high longevity and shelf life that will give them their high commercial value.
The lack of transparency in the seed supply chain, tampering with products, and maintaining paper-based records are a few of the challenges in the value chain. Lack of digitization leaves it vulnerable to fraudulence and food safety risks. Traceability solutions provide end-to-end visibility and help in capturing data at all stages in the seed supply chain making it accountable and trustworthy. Digital interventions will help all the stakeholders to leverage data and build a robust supply chain and ensure a quality product that can strengthen both the domestic and global seed market. Check how traceability is transforming the Agri value chains.
The use of blockchain technology for the seed supply chain brings real change to seed management. It provides the ability to track the purity of the seed. The unique digital identity created for every batch of seeds provides a complete history of the seed supply chain providing transparency and visibility to the buyer.
TraceX’s blockchain solution for seed and supply chain management is helping brands gain a competitive advantage by enabling transparency – from nucleus seed to certified seed – in the crop journey.
Check how the Telangana government piloted a seed traceability project with TraceX to realize a tamper-free and effective seed market