Nairobi - KEPHIS and stakeholders in the seed and plant variety protection sub-sectors officially launched the automated seed certification and plant variety protection System. The System, which took about 2.5 years to develop, will reduce costs and time taken by seed merchants, traders, sellers, growers and plant breeders as they seek regulatory services from KEPHIS. Among the benefits is reduced transactional time and cost in applying for and issuing necessary process documents, increased process visibility enabling clients to trace their applications in real time, increased process and document security, improved access to information relating the seed certification and plant variety protection, convenience in submitting and processing applications for services as the system can be accessed at any time, ability to make use of data for analytics and other business intelligence operations and ability to make payments online.
Speaking during the event, the PS in the State Department of Crops Research Prof. Hamadi Boga reiterated the need for automation in the agriculture sector, which greatly improves services especially as Kenya's economy is predominantly agricultural. KEPHIS Board Chairman Robin Achoki said that the automation of the seed certification and plant variety protection processes was part of the organization's ICT Strategy to serve its clients better hence facilitate plant trade locally and internationally.
Alban Odhiambo from TradeMark East Africa(TMEA), who were the financiers of the Project, enumerated the partnership between TMEA and KEPHIS which started with signing an MOU between the two organizations in order to develop the System. He reiterated the importance of the seed sector in complying to standards. Systems are not static, he added, and should adopt to changes in policy and the business environment.
"We have to have the capacity and technology to feed ourselves," he said.
In automating, KEPHIS becomes the 3rd country in Africa, after South Africa and Zambia, to digitize their seed certification and plant variety protection processes.
The official launch of the Seed Certification and Plant Variety Protection System.
Ag. MD Kenya Seed Company Limited Mr. Fred Oloibe.
AgriSeedCo MD Mr. Wellington Wasike give their remarks during the official launch of the automation of the Seed Certification and Plant Variety Protection System.