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Feed the Future Global Supporting Seed Systems for Development (S34D)

Download a 2-page overview of S34D

Activity Overview

The Feed the Future Global Supporting Seed Systems for Development (S34D) is a Leader with Associate (LWA) activity, funded by the Feed the Future initiative through the Bureau of Food Security and by USAID through OFDA. S34D was created to enhance farmers’ access to a full range of seed choices and options to maximize their responsive decision making and planning for production. The activity builds on existing partnerships and seeks to provide new insights and business models to extend the reach of quality seed to last mile users including women, youth, and vulnerable groups. S34D seeks to improve the functioning of formal, informal and emergency seed sectors in Feed the Future aligned and other priority countries with economic growth, resilience and emergency seed security programs.

COVID-19 Programming

S34D and its partners have adapted to the ongoing situation: through our work with the Global Food Security Cluster (gFSC), guidance was released providing key information to implementing organizations that are considering emergency seed interventions linked to the COVID-19 pandemic and other stresses. Other emergency seed security response guidelines and lessons during COVID-19 can be found here, and minimum standards needed to conduct a Seed System Assessment were recently released by FAO and seedsystem.org. Our partner IFDC has developed a Fertilizer Watch to provide updates to stakeholders in East & Southern African related to the spread of COVID-19, measures taken by country governments, and logistical constraints that impact fertilizer flows and supply chains; these updates will allow stakeholders to use the information to plan accordingly and ensure consistent delivery to farmers. Wageningen University & Research and partners released Seed Alerts to identify current challenges and urgent actions in the seed sectors of Ethiopia, Nigeria, Myanmar and Uganda based on surveys and focus group discussions with various stakeholders.


Where We Work

Click on the highlighted areas of the map below to explore where S34D works, what we do and more.


Quick Facts

Life of Activity: 2018-2023

Total Ceiling: $49.5m

Donor: Feed the Future through RFS, and USAID through OFDA

S34D Goal: Improved functioning of high-impact integrated seed systems through provision of customized services to USAID Missions and their IPs to upgrade seed systems.

S34D Vision: Improved choices for smallholder farmers to access quality seed of modern varieties from pluralistic, functional and sustainable seed systems for better livelihood and agricultural transformation.

Consortium: Catholic Relief Services (Prime), Agri Experience, ABC/PABRA, IFDC, Opportunity International, Purdue University

Service Providers: Kuza, New Markets Lab

Key Partners: AGRA’s PIATA, ICRISAT’s AVISA, ISSD Africa, TASAI, Syngenta’s Seeds2B, IITA

Geography: Global—responding to any USAID Mission’s request

Info: [email protected] | COP: [email protected]


S34D Team

CRS and its partners bring together seed expertise across the formal, informal, and emergency sectors to integrate and develop seed systems. S34D’s core team is comprised of a senior management team that includes Nikaj van Wees (CRS-Chief of Party), Bhramar Dey (CRS-Senior Technical Advisor MEL, Seed Policy, Data, Strategy), Latha Nagarajan (IFDC-Formal Seed Sector Advisor), Kate Longley (CRS-ECR Seed Systems Advisor), JC Rubyogo (ABC-Informal Seed Sector Advisor), Robin Buruchara (ABC-Seed Systems Advisor), and Jason Sullivan (CRS-Operations Director). This team is strengthened by our consortium partners’ staff: Aline O’Connor and Mulemia Maina (AE), Dieudonne Baributsa (Purdue), Tim Strong and John Magnay (Opportunity International), and Shaun Ferris (CRS).



What services does S34D offer?

New Seed Business Models

  • New financial instruments for firms and farmers.
  • Reduce bottlenecks to seed system development, availability, access and quality.
  • Build capacity of seed companies to improve efficiency and diversify crops.
  • Catalyze new vendors of post-harvest technologies.

Digital Feedback & Last Mile Delivery

  • Fee-based multi-sided AgTech digital platform of rural agents for last mile delivery.
  • Assess farmer adoption of new varieties using point-of-sale applications.
  • Develop digital training and testing platform for seed inspectors.

Seed Diagnostics

  • Identify methods to improve market forecasting; cost and demand estimation.
  • Use DNA fingerprinting to assess genetic purity of seed.
  • Provide seed information, data and analytical services.

Emergency Seed & Resilience

  • Conduct Seed System Security Assessments (SSSAs).
  • Support resiliency in seed systems and mitigate market distortions.
  • Develop market-based humanitarian seed interventions.

Liberalize Seed Policies & Practices

  • Limit free seed distribution to critical needs.
  • Implement ‘stop bad seed’ strategies.
  • Support policy and regulatory reform implementation.

Integrate Seed Systems & Trade Corridors

  • Analyze seed access within target grain corridors.
  • Facilitate implementation and harmonization of regional seed catalogues and protocols.


Download a PDF of the S34D Study on Cash Transfers for Seed Security

Download a PDF of the S34D FY19 Semi-Annual Report

Download a PDF of the S34D FY19 Annual Report  

Download a copy of Guidance for Emergency Seed Interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic

Download a copy of Market-led Interventions in Emergency Seed Security Responses

Consortium Partners

Agrilinks is the online hub where agriculture, food security and development professionals connect, share and learn. Established in 2011, Agrilinks has become the go-to source for informative discussions on development topics and the latest information that is furthering resilience, food security and poverty reduction.

For more seed resources, check out our partner site https://seedsystem.org.

For more information on the Feed the Future initiative, please visit www.feedthefuture.gov.


This website was made possible by the generous support from the American people through the U.S. Government's Feed the Future initiative and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through Cooperative Agreement 7200AA18LE00004. The contents are the responsibility of Catholic Relief Services and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

The information provided on this website is not official U.S. Government information and does not represent the views or positions of the U.S. Agency for International Development or the U.S. Government.