Sorghum in Eastern and Southern Africa

Sorghum yields in Eastern and Southern Africa are affected by both biotic and abiotic
constraints. Improved crop management and new varieties with increased resistance
to pests and diseases can significantly increase crop yields.



  • High-yielding sorghum cultivars (OPVs and hybrids) with resistance to the main biotic and abiotic stresses and with farmer preferred/market traits released and used by farmers
  • 14 cultivars released in Eritrea, Sudan, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Kenya and Zimbabwe
  • End use grain quality analysis: 26 lines identified with desirable malting qualities; 10 varieties tested for feed quality and found suitable
  • Improved agronomic packages identified, validated and promoted
  • Trained farmers, extension staff, agro dealers, and seed companies in Good Agricultural Practices
  • Promoted new cultivars, quality seed and fertilizer use with small seed packs
  • Trained farmers and extension staff in value addition and market enterprise practices
  • Trained farmers, extension staff and small seed dealers in seed production.


  • Community seed production units initiated in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda; women the main producers
  • Farmers access more quality seed of improved varieties leading to increased production
  • Farmers have access to mechanized threshing
  • Capacity building: Over 45,000 farmers trained
  • 8000 farmers in Kenya marketing grain to the malting industry every year
  • 40%: Improvement in grain price realized in Kenya
  • 55% more yields in Tanzania from fertilizer + improved Striga-resistant sorghum variety + tied ridges
  • Up to 4.4 t/ha yields in Ethiopia from ridging + microdosing compared to the national average of 2.1 t/ha
  • Training in diversified recipes led to increased utilization at the household level
  • Fish farmers in Makueni County, Kenya, incorporate sorghum in fish feed, substituting maize.

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