Seed Certification System in Nepal
Seed certification system is a legally sectioned system for quality control of seed during seed multiplication and production. It is a scientific and systematically designed process to secure, maintain, multiply and make available seeds of notified and related varieties to the farmers. Seed certification through field and laboratory inspections and continuous pedigree records provide a most practical and reliable method of verifying genetic identity and purity certified seed is the starting point to successful crop as well as an important risk management tool. Certified seed is the progeny of foundation seed and its production is supervised and approved by certification agency. The seed of this class is normally produced by the state and national seeds cooperation and private seed companies on the farms of progressive growers.
Objectives of seed certification:
- To ensure genetic identity of a variety.
- To ensure high degree of physical purity.
- To ensure high degree of germination.
- To ensure freedom from all designation seed borne diseases, weeds and other crop seeds
- To supply high quality of seed to farmers and other growers
Good crop production begins with planting high quality seed, and seed certification procedures provide the best possible third-party assurance of good quality seed.
Seed certification was started first in wheat in Nepal. Seed act (1988) has been enacted for the system. The system includes the maintenance of growing of new varieties with its multiplication. It includes field inspection, seed quality tests and pre or post quality check. Certification is a voluntary method but labelling is compulsory. The general seed certification standards has to be followed. The minimum number of field inspection in required growth stages of the specified crop species are done. The minimum isolation meters are checked according to the crop varieties, seed standard of the crop also differs. Seed intended for domestic international markets is controlled and inspected by official sources in order to guarantee consistent high quality for consumers.
The basic steps in this include:
- Thoroughly checking of the seed producing bodies,
- Land, location of the seed producing areas are checked,
- Source and class of the seeds are also checked,
- Field inspection of the seed crops, and the agricultural practices followed are also observed,
- Seed sampling for inspection and the tests of their quality is also done,
- Bagging, tagging, sealing, and grant of certification tags are followed later,
In Nepal, general knowledge is growing related to seed business as well with development, different seed production initiatives are carried on seed certification has been defined by the respective institute. Even when seed is to be purchased from private or from some other state departments such certification are essential, with long term vision Nepal adopted a holistic vision for the development of Nepal’ seed sector included in “National Seed Vision 2013-2025”. The leading organization for the seed certification is “Seed Quality Control Center” (SQCC), MOAD. Regional testing lab also work on their certification procedures. SQCC has been conducted obtaining accreditation from international community of seed certification. Establishment/functional organizations which have duties and responsibilities of seed test and also have power to notify the kind and varieties. In Nepalese context, seeds are properly labelled and recorded in the register, following information should be included in the list like the species (Latin name and Nepali name), date of collection, place of collection, district, Zone.