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Topic 19: Scaling up Triple S: Why, what and how should we do it for significant impact?

Timely access to enough quantities of quality planting material is a key limiting factor in sweetpotato production in Sub-Saharan Africa. This is exacerbated by unpredictable changes in climatic conditions which makes it difficult to conserve planting material during the dry seasons.   Triple S is one of the technologies that can help address this. Triple S involves Storing sweetpotato roots in Sand and letting them to Sprout when it is about to rain. Some stories about the benefits of Triple S are available on and .  Concerted efforts are needed in scaling up the technology to benefit more farmers. The 2019 SSS-CoP online discussions started with experience and knowledge sharing on Triple S with an aim of proposing ways through which the technology can benefit more farmers. Led by Mihiretu Cherinet, the discussion was held on April 8 – 23, 2019.

Why Triple S

Triple S which refers to ‘Storage in Sand and Sprouting’ provides planting material from storage roots in areas with a long dry season. In such areas, farmers often obtain sweetpotato planting material from roots which have been overlooked during harvest and sprout when it rains. However:

  1. The roots sprout only when it rains and planting material only becomes available some weeks afterwards
  2. The roots may sprout in distant fields, unprotected from grazing animals and thieves.