An MSD advocate's arsenal #1: Katalyst 'Seeds of change'

Making ‘last mile’ distribution of quality seed work for smallholder farmers

Published by
BEAM Exchange

One of a series of short accessible slide presentations which quickly communicate the nuts and bolts of the MSD approach to a wide range of audiences. Each slide deck (made up of six slides) is accompanied by speaker notes explaining the case in just enough detail for a five minute presentation.

Case #1 describes how Katalyst enabled half a million small farmers to step up vegetable production in Bangladesh between 2008 and 2013.

Katalyst was one of the first MSD programmes to translate the ‘making markets work for the poor’ concept into a functional approach.

  • The initiative overcame last-mile distribution hurdles for vegetable seeds, enabling at least half a million smallholder farmers (many women) to step up vegetable production.
  • It involved innovations in seed packaging and access to critical information via mobile seed vendors; driven by engagement with seed supplier companies.
  • These changes were taken up at such a large scale that access to quality seeds, and good advice about how to use them, become the ‘new normal’ for Bangladeshi smallholder farmers.
  • The programme resulted in income and nutritional benefits for millions of people living in rural poverty.

Katalyst background information

The case for MSD series

The BEAM Exchange’s case for MSD series provides ready-to-go presentations and accompanying notes. They are designed to increase awareness and understanding of what programmes that use the MSD approach look like in practice, their ambition and results.