Seed Project

Resistant, high quality seeds are indispensable for sustainable smallholder agriculture. For years, the GAVISA farm has been breeding and preserving old and newer seed varieties that are best adapted to local conditions. The aim of the seed project is to improve the access of smallholders to seeds and to further develop and regionally disseminate cultural techniques of seed multiplication.

0 %

of the project are already financed


are still needed to complete financing of the project

The problem

Many smallholders in the region around Yéviépé have become economically dependent in recent years. In the villages, commercial suppliers sell hybrid seeds with the “appropriate” pesticides and artificial fertilizers to small farmers at favorable conditions. In return, the farmers agree to sell the harvest to the commercial suppliers at a predetermined and usually unfavorable price per kilo.

Hybrid seeds often produce good yields in the first few years. But there are several key disadvantages. First, hybrid seeds cannot be propagated and must be newly purchased each year. Second, the usually associated use of pesticides, insecticides and artificial fertilizers lead to a degeneration of soil quality. Third, the storability of hybrid crops is often poorer. This makes it rather unattractive for farmers to store part of their harvest and sell it at a later date at better prices or to consume it themselves in the event of food shortages.

The approach

The team from the GAVISA farm already has experience in the propagation of resistant seeds and has, for example, systematically collected old, local corn varieties in recent years. A wide variety of vegetables are also grown and propagated.

Now they would like to share their seeds and know-how with smallholder farmers. The project was planned over several months, and at the beginning of January the starting signal was given for the first stage: the preparation of the area on which the seeds are to be grown. Subsequently, smallholders will be trained over a period of six months on the subject of seed production. The smallholders grow the seeds in their own fields to gain experience and come to the GAVISA farm once a month for a full day of training.


“Our goal is to enable smallholder farmers in the Kloto region to return to subsistence farming. In recent decades, much knowledge about seed production has been lost, and hybrid seeds are used almost exclusively, which have to be bought every year. […] We want people to own their own seeds.”

Djalilou Bessekrom – Employee at GAVISA

Stages of the project

  1. Preparation of the area for seed production.
  2. Acquisition of materials, including irrigation equipment.
  3. Sowing of the first crops.
  1. Raising of the plants
  2. Announcement of the project in the Kloto region, among others, by regional radio.
  3. Registration for training.
  1. Construction of a small hut to store the seeds.
  2. Harvest and storage of the seeds.
  3. Distribution of the seeds to the participating smallholders.
  4. Start of the six-month training.
  1. Harvesting of the propagated seeds in the farmers’ fields.
  2. Preservation of the obtained seeds.
  3. Completion of the training and the project cycle.

Our contribution

We are convinced of the meaningfulness and the solid, detailed planning of the project and want to support the development of the project with donations.

Since fall 2020, we have been in close exchange with the GAVISA team about the status of the planning and the first steps of the project. We are very excited about the joint implementation of the seed project.

The current call for donations for the project (Download as PDF, german only)

The GAVISA farm was founded in 2012 by Komla Zivi and other supporters from Togo. Thanks to taking good care of the soil, biodynamic cultivation techniques adapted to local conditions and the tireless efforts of the association members, the farm is growing and thriving. Since 2019, the farm is officially recognized as a training farm for organic and sustainable agriculture in Togo.

Partner organisation: GAVISA

Location: Yéviépé near Kpalimé, western Togo

This could also interest you:

Completed projects

Construction of a guest room on the farm Gavisa

The farm GAVISA Togo has a beautiful location – on a high plateau near Kpalimé, near a mountain river.

Unfortunately, the farm has lacked an overnight accommodation for visitors and guests. According to the GAVISA Togo team, this was particularly unfortunate, as the farm is located in a region that is attractive to tourists, and the project could use more public visibility and income from overnight guests.

Learn more »