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Journal Article

The value of climate-resilient seeds for smallholder adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa


Cacho,  Oscar
External Organizations;

Moss,  Jonathan
External Organizations;

Thornton,  Philip K.
External Organizations;

Herrero,  Mario
External Organizations;

Henderson,  Benjamin
External Organizations;


Bodirsky,  Benjamin Leon
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Humpenöder,  Florian
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Popp,  Alexander
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

Lipper,  Leslie
External Organizations;

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Cacho, O., Moss, J., Thornton, P. K., Herrero, M., Henderson, B., Bodirsky, B. L., Humpenöder, F., Popp, A., Lipper, L. (in press): The value of climate-resilient seeds for smallholder adaptation in Sub-Saharan Africa. - Climatic Change.

Cite as: https://publications.pik-potsdam.de/pubman/item/item_24310
Climate change is threatening food security in many tropical countries, where a largeproportion of food is produced by vulnerable smallholder farmers. Interventions areavailable to offset many of the negative impacts of climate change on agriculture andthey can be tailored to local conditions often through relative modest investments.However, little quantitative information is available to guide investment or policychoices at a time when countries and development agencies are under pressure toimplement policies that can help achieve Sustainable Development Goals while copingwith climate change. Among smallholder adaptation options, developing seeds resilientto current and future climate shocks expected locally, is one of the most importantactions available now. In this paper, we used national and local data to estimate thecosts of climate change to smallholder farmers in Malawi and Tanzania. We found thatthe benefits from adopting resilient seeds ranged between 984 million and 2.1 billionUSD during 2020-2050. Our analysis demonstrates the benefits of establishing andmaintaining a flexible national seed sector with participation by communities in thebreeding, delivery, adoption cycle.