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DFID and USAID boost Afghan seed sector

Western governments have pledged US$12 million to help Afghan farmers cope with extreme weather and food shortages. The UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) have each provided US$6 million of loans to private smallscale seed producers in the troubled Central Asian state.

The money will be used to purchase about 6,000 tonnes of certified wheat seed as part of the Afghanistan Variety and Seed Industry Development initiative, jointly implemented by FAO and the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture. According to the UN, many poor Afghans spend up to 60 per cent of their income on bread alone, and it has appealed for over US$80 million to help combat malnutrition in the country.

Date published: September 2008


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