The role of seed technology in the development of root and tuber crops sector and poverty alleviation
Seed technology is the method through which the genetic and physical characteristics of seed could be improved involving such initiatives as variety development, evaluation, seed testing quality control and release amongst others. It is also a basic tool for food security if properly utilized. This technology has not been fully applied in the root and tuber crops possibly because of the limited use as a tropical crop compared to the temperate crops. It has been shown that root and tuber crops can sustain the life of both animals and humans. Root crop based institutes like the National Root Crops Research Institute Umudike realized of late the inclusion of the programme in their research agenda for increased food production hence the necessity to emphasize its role bring it to the front burner. This paper therefore highlights the role of seed technology on the development of the root and tuber crops for increased food production poverty alleviation with emphasis on both major and minor root crops, the seed systems and their ability to alleviate hunger and poverty. It concluded that it is evident that a well-structured root and tuber seed technology programme with modern facility can alleviate poverty since poverty may actually not be totally eradicated.
Keywords: Seed technology, Roots and Tubers and increased food production