Togo – The new prices for certified seeds by the National Network of Certified Seed Producers (RNPSC-Togo) could negatively affect Togo’s cereal production for 2023/24, according to the Togo First report

This follows the announcement made by Balintiya Konsana, the president of RNPSC-Togo during its general assembly in Atakpamé, giving new rates for certified seeds.

As per the new rates, a kilogram of maize seed of all varieties is fixed at 650 FCFA (US$1.1) up from 500 FCFA (US$0.8) the previous season reflecting a 30% jump.

According to Togo First, this price increase could have repercussions on production costs for Togolese farmers, a sector that employs two-thirds of the population and accounts for about 41% of GDP.

However, the RNPSC-Togo said the announcement was made so that the producers can be well-informed and make necessary adjustments.

Quoting Balintiya Konsana, “Seed is one of the basic inputs for a farmer and quickly knowing these prices will allow the farmer to better organize himself.”

Corn is the main food crop in Togo. In 2021, corn production represented 66% of the 1.4 million tons of cereal production (maize, rice, sorghum, and millet)

The crop is grown on more than 700,000 hectares occupying 40% of the area devoted to food crops, according to data from the ministry of agriculture.

Regarding rice production, the National Strategy for Rice cultivation Development (SNDR) reported that farmers find it relatively expensive to cultivate rice hence the county imports more than 50% of its local needs from Asia.

However, the new price rates for seeds impose a threat to local production affecting the country’s efforts in intensifying local production to reduce imports and the corresponding importation cost

According to RNPSC-Togo, a kilogram of rice seed will retail at 550 FCFA from 500 FCFA/Kg in the previous season, recording a 10% increase.

Other cereals were also affected by the new rates. Sorghum and fonio seeds (also called ancient grain) will now cost 850 FCFA and 600 FCFA respectively.

Sesame, cowpea, soybean, and groundnut are expected to sell at 2500 FCFA, 850 FCFA, 750 FCFA, and 850 FCFA per kilogram. Peanuts on the other hand are expected to cost 800 FCFA/Kg.

In 2021, prices were 500 FCFA/Kg for corn, 625 FCFA/Kg for soybeans, 425 FCFA/Kg for rice, and 750 FCFA/Kg for peanuts.

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