Improving Access to High-Quality Seed Yam


 Improving Access to High-Quality Seed Yam

This report highlights significant achievements of the CSIR-SARI under the YIIFSWA II (Yam Improvement for Income and Food Security in West Africa), now transitioned into PROSSIVA (Program for Seed Systems Innovations for vegetatively propagated crops in Africa), sponsored by the BMGF/IITA.

The main focus of the project is to develop and provide a functional, commercial seed yam seed system in Ghana and Nigeria to benefit smallholder farmers through timely and affordable access to high quality seed yam of improved varieties.

The key achievements in Ghana include but not limited to:

  • Development of high ratio propagation techniques such as tissue culture, hydroponics, semi-autotrophic hydroponics (SAH) and single node vine cuttings for rapid multiplication of clean seed yam, in collaboration with IITA.
  • Increased multiplication ratio of yam to 1:300 with the vine cutting technology, compared to the 1:4 using tubers, and 1:30 with mini-sett technique.
  • Supported the release of 5 end-user preferred varieties.
  • Promotion and dissemination of improved yam varieties to increase seed access to farmers.
  • Built a tissue culture laboratory at CSIR-SARI to support the production of early generation seed.
  • Developed a formal seed system for yam in Ghana where regulatory rules are functional.
  • Strengthened the capacity of PPRSD in yam virus diagnostics and the use of seed tracker software for seed quality assurance.
  • Supported the establishment of 3 private seed companies (Hikma Agro Services, Iribov West Africa, Fosuah Food Chain) to specialise in the production of foundation and certified seed yam.
  • Capacity development of six members of the yam team on new techniques in vine cutting.
  • Training programme on good agricultural practices for the production of clean seed yam from foundation seed tubers.
  • Assisted the formation of seed yam entrepreneurs in the major yam production hubs and increased the supply of certified seed yam.
  • Trained 4 BSC and 2 MSC students in UDS, Nyankpala.

Seed yam 


Vine cutting technique for production of clean seed yam

 World Creativity and Innovation Day is celebrated worldwide each year on April 21 with the aim of inspiring people to tap into their creative abilities. The theme for this year’s celebration; “Step Out and Innovate” seeks to raise awareness about the significance of creativity and innovation in various aspects of human development and as a vital tool for maximizing a country's economic potential. CSIR embraced the theme and stepped out with its innovative approach to science and technology in Ghana.

Source: CSIR- Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (SARI)


CSIR-Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (SARI) is one of the 13 research institutes of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). It was originally known as the Nyankpala Agricultural Experimental Station (NAES) and operated as an outpost of the CSIR-Crop Research Institute (CRI), Kumasi. In June 1994, it gained autonomy and was upgraded to a fully-fledged research institute and thus renamed as CSIR-Savanna Agricultural Research Institute. CSIR-SARI is located 16 kilometres west of Tamale in the Tolon district of the Northern region of Ghana.

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