Demand led plant variety design for emerging markets in Africa

Beans growing
Project code
AUD 1,435,000
Research program manager
Dr Eric Huttner
Project leader
Professor Kaye Basford
Commissioned organisation
The University of Queensland
JUN 2014
JUN 2023
Project status
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This project aimed to contribute to the transformation of African agriculture by enabling small-scale farmers to participate in local and regional markets by increasing the availability and adoption of high-performing plant varieties that meet market demands.

Impactful plant breeding is a product development activity. African plant breeders and their teams were supported in their evolution towards "The Business of Plant Breeding". The research outcome is that plant breeders in Africa will adopt more demand-led approaches to plant breeding to respond to the preferences of farmers, consumers, and others along the value chain. The demand led breeding (DLB) project has been supported by an Alliance for Food Security, formed in 2014 by ACIAR and the Crawford Fund Australia, and the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA), Switzerland. The project is managed by the University of Queensland, on behalf of three co-sponsors and the partners in Africa.

News on project activities and access to educational and technical resource materials can be found on the project website:

Project outcomes

  • Enabled plant breeders to develop more high-performing varieties that meet customer requirements and market demand.
  • Built capacity within plant breeding programs on demand-led plant variety design.
  • Provided evidence to support the development of new policies and investments in plant breeding that will generate more high-performing varieties to meet emerging market demands, with emphasis on Africa.
Key partners
African Centre for Crop Improvement
Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa
Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa
Biosciences eastern and central Africa
Crawford Fund
Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa
International Livestock Research Institute
Pan Africa Bean Research Alliance
Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture
Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA)
The University of Queensland
University of Ghanna
University of Nairobi
West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI)
West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development
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Fact Sheet FSC/2013/019