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Novel Technology to Reduce the Complexity of Maize Seed Production and increase Maize Hybrid Yields in Farmer’s Fields
Collaborative field evaluations reveal promising results for SSA’s low input maize farming systems and commercial seed production
A recently published study in Nature Communications Biology journal (https://www.nature.com/articles/s42003-022-03680-7) demonstrates the potential of a novel seed production technology to transform Africa’s seed production system, conferring significant benefits to smallholder maize farmers and seed companies in Africa.
The Seed Production Technology for Africa (SPTA) process enables the production of non-pollen-producing inbred seeds that can be used in a two-step multiplication process to produce commercial seeds of hybrid varieties containing equal parts pollen-producing and non-pollen growing plants. The pollen-producing plants provide pollen for the entire field, while the non-pollen producing plants deliver additional grain since they save energy by not producing pollen and by reducing tassel size. Hybrids in which fifty percent of the plants are non-pollen producing have a significant grain yield advantage compared with their counterparts in which all plants produce pollen.