The Business of Plant Breeding is the result of a study on demand-led plant variety design for markets in Africa, sharing the best practices from private and public sector breeding programmes worldwide that are applicable to improving tropical crops in Africa. Beginning with an overview of the principles of demand-led plant breeding, the book then discusses aspects such as understanding the demands of clients and markets in rural and urban areas, foresight in setting product profiles and breeding targets, and determining breeding strategy and stage plans. It also covers measuring success and making the business case for future investments in breeding programmes that will deliver new varieties to meet market demands.

The book (i) brings together the experience of plant breeders around the world, representing universities, national plant breeding programmes, regional and international agricultural research institutes, and private seed companies, showcasing how to respond to changing market demands, (ii) provides educational resource materials within each chapter, (iii) includes templates for use as planning tools by plant breeding programs for determining priority traits that meet market demands.

An important read for professionals and students of plant breeding and genetics, this book is also a useful resource for anyone interested in developing and disseminating new, market-led technologies to increase productivity and profitability in tropical agriculture.


The book covers a set of 7 intricate topics:
  • 1: Principles of Demand-led Plant Variety Design
  • 2: Visioning and Foresight for Setting Breeding Goals
  • 3: Understanding Clients’ Needs
  • 4: New Variety Design and Product Profiling
  • 5: Variety Development Strategy and Stage Plan
  • 6: Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning
  • 7: The Business Case for Investment in New Variety Development

The book was launched during the workshop with breeders on demand led plant variety design for emerging markets in Africa between 11 and 13 December 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Launch of The business of plant breeding during the demand led plant variety design for emerging markets in Africa workshop


You can now access the book here