In partnership with MINAGRI and NAEB, RAB, RALIS and RSB, SAFE convened a second expert roundtable with a theme “Making Certification Work for Producers of Horticultural Planting Materials” that took place on Friday 14th October 2016 at UMUBANO Hotel.
This Roundtable followed the first expert roundtable held in December 2015 which recommended among others, to explore convening high level discussions around certification process of planting material producers in Rwandan Horticulture sector, in relation to the socio economic value of horticulture and the barriers small farmers are facing to access to clean, healthy, vigorous, disease and climate resistant planting materials, foundations for the high productivity and quality expected by and from producers.
The purpose of this roundtable was to build awareness on potentials for development and dissemination of inspection guidelines and certification standards of horticultural planting materials produced by smallholder farmers.
Horticulture is one of the key champions of export in the region and beyond the region. Although their opportunities of exporting high value horticulture products, farmers do still have challenges to obtain certified planting materials. This affects not only low production for expert but also both conventional and organic horticultural crops remains low.
Participants have discussed on various issues faced by these propagators: lack of improved cultivars, little knowledge on good and sustainable cultural practices limited availability of clean planting material, and came with tangible solutions in awareness of law and procedures in certification but also in the development of the sector.
Participants have also shown commitments in networking for promotion of certification of horticultural planting materials, distribution of horticultural planting materials and also advocacy, training and support them on adopting standards to get certification. SAFE, RSB, RALIS, and MINAGRI/RAB will continue working together to raise awareness on potentials for development and dissemination of inspection guidelines and certification standards of horticultural planting materials produced by smallholder farmers.