Abstract

A project for non-technical production of bean seeds was implemented in the Caisán and San Andrés districts of Renacimiento and Bugaba, province of Chiriquí, Panama, in 1989. The objectives of this project were to contribute to solve the problem of scarcity of good quality seeds to be used by producers, to accelerate diffusion of new varieties, and to train technicians and growers in the cultivation of beans for seed production. Over the eight years of the project implementation, an average of 25.23 t of seed per year have been produced in an area of 17 hectares, with an average yield of 1.512 kg/ha in both locations. Technicians and growers have been trained through seminars, workshops, demonstration plots, and field trips related to bean seed production. New technologies were diffused through the project, especially improved varieties including Barriles, Renacimiento, Primavera, IDIAP-R2 and IDIAP-C l. In order to handle the production and marketing of seeds produced annually in each productive area, farmers were organized in a seed-producers association.