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Golden cassava varieties (Vitamin A fortified)

Yellow-fleshed cassava rich in vitamin A

Yellow-fleshed cassava is a vitamin A-enriched variety. The variety is the result of the cross-breeding of natural lines containing high levels of provitamin A and hybrid lines with higher yield potential disease resistance and drought tolerance.


This technology is TAAT1 validated.


Scaling readiness: idea maturity 7/9; level of use 6/9


Open source / open access


Golden cassava technology provide solutions to numerable problem such as:

  • Malnutrition and Hidden Hunger: Many people in Sub-Saharan Africa rely on cassava as their main food staple, but commonly grown cassava varieties lack essential vitamins and minerals. This has led to widespread malnutrition and hidden hunger, particularly vitamin A deficiency, affecting 50% of children.

  • Vitamin A Deficiency-Related Health Issues: Insufficient vitamin A intake causes preventable blindness in children and compromises their immune system, increasing the risk of death from diseases like measles, diarrhea, and respiratory infections.

  • Limited Nutritional Value: Conventional cassava varieties do not provide balanced nutrition, unlike synthetic supplements, and do not contain sufficient provitamin A.

  • Agronomic Challenges: Many cassava varieties lack disease resistance and drought tolerance, limiting their yield potential.


Golden cassava technology provides numerous solutions to the problems such as

  • Biofortification with Provitamin A: Golden cassava varieties are biofortified with elevated levels of provitamin A, which is converted into vitamin A in the body. This addresses the problem of vitamin A deficiency and hidden hunger.

  • Improved Agronomic Traits: Through breeding techniques, golden cassava varieties are developed by crossing natural lines with elite land races and hybrid lines, resulting in improved agronomic traits such as disease resistance and drought tolerance.

  • Higher Provitamin A Content: Golden cassava varieties contain 2 to 3 times more provitamin A than the original parent material, allowing them to meet a significant portion or all of the nutritional requirements in communities that rely on cassava as a staple food.

  • Genomic Modification: Genomic modification is used to silence the activity of enzymes that break down provitamin A without reducing yield potential or interfering with other agronomic traits.

  • Successful Scaling and Commercialization: Scaling programs for golden cassava in Sub-Saharan African countries have effectively reduced vitamin A deficiency and related health issues, boosting value creation for farmers at the local and regional scale.

  • Adaptability: Golden cassava varieties can be adapted to various agro-ecosystems and growing conditions, making them suitable for a wide range of regions.

  • Consumer Acceptance: Studies show that consumers do not object to the color and like the flavor of provitamin A-enriched cassava, which promotes its acceptance.

  • Wide Availability: Open-pollinating lines of golden cassava can be multiplied by community and private enterprises for rapid scaling and commercialization, while hybrid types with improved traits are also available.

  • High Yields: Some golden cassava varieties, like UMUCASS 36, UMUCASS 37, and UMUCASS 38, have been developed to achieve similar or higher yields than natural or hybrid lines under various soil and weather conditions, addressing the agronomic challenges.

Key points to design your business plan

For Seed Multipliers

Producing Golden Cassava provides enhanced nutrition, agronomic resilience, opportunities for women's empowerment, and support for Sustainable Development Goals, including food security, health, gender equality, and climate action.

To excel in this market, it's crucial to locate reliable seed sources in Nigeria, optimize transportation logistics, and assess storage options. 

Effective seed multiplication requires stocking up on Foundation or Registered Seed, depending on your role in the seed development process. While open-pollinating varieties are free from royalties for multiplication and sales by farmers, they do necessitate certification in accordance with national seed system regulations.

Your potential customers are : wholesale distributors of seed to retailers, and to development projects, government agencies, and NGOs. 

Building strong partnerships with wholesale distributor networks is key to the success of your business.

For Resellers

Selling Golden Cassava not only provides a valuable product but also fosters closer engagement with users while simultaneously enhancing health and wellbeing on a global scale.

To successfully navigate this market, you need to know where to source golden maize in bulk, identify efficient transportation methods, and explore suitable storage facilities 

Your potential customer base is: small, local retailers, development projects, producers, and producer cooperatives or associations.

For Users

Using Golden Cassava offers a cost-effective, sustainable solution to combat vitamin A deficiency, ensures consistent nutrient supply, and empowers diverse farming communities for enhanced health and wellbeing

As key partners you need sellers of  Golden Cassava. 

You need to estimate the profit realized with the use of the the product.


Positive or neutral impact

Adults 18 and over
Positive high
The poor
Positive high
Under 18
Positive high
Positive high

Positive or neutral impact

Climate adaptability
It adapts really well
Adaptability for farmers
It helps a lot
It helps them grow and thrive
Carbon footprint
It doesn't reduce emissions at all
It makes a little difference
Soil quality
It doesn't harm the soil's health and fertility
Water usage
It uses the same amount of water

Countries with a green colour
Tested & adopted
Countries with a bright green colour
Countries with a yellow colour
Egypt Equatorial Guinea Ethiopia Algeria Angola Benin Botswana Burundi Burkina Faso Democratic Republic of the Congo Djibouti Côte d’Ivoire Eritrea Gabon Gambia Ghana Guinea Guinea-Bissau Cameroon Kenya Libya Liberia Madagascar Mali Malawi Morocco Mauritania Mozambique Namibia Niger Nigeria Republic of the Congo Rwanda Zambia Senegal Sierra Leone Zimbabwe Somalia South Sudan Sudan South Africa Eswatini Tanzania Togo Tunisia Chad Uganda Western Sahara Central African Republic Lesotho
Countries where the technology has been tested and adopted
Country Tested Adopted
Nigeria Tested Adopted

This technology can be used in the colored agro-ecological zones. Any zones shown in white are not suitable for this technology.

Agro-ecological zones where this technology can be used
AEZ Subtropic - warm Subtropic - cool Tropic - warm Tropic - cool

Source: HarvestChoice/IFPRI 2009

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals that are applicable to this technology.

Sustainable Development Goal 2: zero hunger
Goal 2: zero hunger
Sustainable Development Goal 3: good health and well-being
Goal 3: good health and well-being
Sustainable Development Goal 5: gender equality
Goal 5: gender equality

  1. Select healthy cuttings from yellow-fleshed cassava varieties, and Ensure that the cuttings are free from disease symptoms.

  2. Choose the appropriate planting technique based on local rainfall conditions. In dry climates, plant cassava cuttings horizontally and cover them entirely with soil. In humid areas with high precipitation, plant cuttings vertically or angularly.

  3. Follow recommended soil and fertilizer management practices tailored to your specific growing area and conditions, essential for achieving high root yields.

  4. Tackle limitations in nutrient availability and water supply. Prevent soil compaction and weed encroachment

  5. Utilize disease-resistant cassava varieties to enhance production levels.

  6. Harvest the mature cassava roots when they are ready for use.

  7. Due to their high nutritional value, the roots from golden cassava varieties are ideal for processing into various products. Manufacture products like flour, bread, garri, or crisps from the cassava roots. These processed goods can be sold in both local and international markets.

Last updated on 22 May 2024