Launched in May 2018, the International Maize Improvement Consortium for Africa (IMIC‐Africa) is a public-private partnership designed to strengthen maize breeding programs in Africa, and thereby improve African farmers’ access to high-quality, affordable, high-yielding and locally-adapted maize seed.
Any organization engaged in maize breeding for the African market is welcome to join the consortium, including national agricultural research institutions; small, medium and large maize seed companies; and international agricultural research organizations. Consortium members will have access to early-generation maize breeding material, an expansive hybrid evaluation network for robust evaluation of their products on various traits and across diverse agroecologies, training and capacity development opportunities, and value-added research services offered at preferential rates.
The Consortium’s goal is to enhance the capacity of African maize breeding programs from public and private sectors to develop elite maize hybrids with client-preferred traits (including abiotic stress resilience, disease and insect pest resistance, and high yield potential), for the ultimate benefit of farming communities across Africa.
- Providing members with access to CIMMYT’s early- and advanced-generation maize lines (breeding materials under development) to strengthen and diversify the germplasm used in their own breeding programs;
- Allowing members to test their own pre-commercial maize hybrids in CIMMYT-led multi-location trials;
- Improving members’ access to research services that improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their own breeding programs;
- Facilitating participation by members’ staff in annual training courses.