Many poor and marginalized farmers in eastern and southern Africa depend on maize for their livelihoods. Isolated from main market centers, these smallholder farmers recycle their seed, growing the same low-yielding varieties they have grown for years–varieties that barely yield enough for the farming family to survive. Nevertheless, there is hope for improvement: newer and better seed varieties can increase maize yields and withstand harsh conditions, such as drought. This brief covers the constraints in release of varieties, trade-related challenges, and offers suggestions for solutions. For further information, contact Augustine Langyintuo (firstname.lastname@example.org).