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September 11th, 2015 / Thomson Reuters Foundation, UK

In the wind-swept plains of Kishapu, in Tanzania’s northern Shinyanga region, Himelda Tumbo has for a few years struggled to grow maize on her farm. “I have suffered huge losses due to drought. The seasonal rains are not enough and the crops are drying up,” she complained. Maize once grew easily, she said, but now “I can hardly get enough to feed my family”. The 53-year-old farmer’s other crops, such as beans, groundnuts and yams, also are struggling – one reason she has now turned to planting drought-resistant orange sweet potato. “Unlike maize, orange potato can brave most conditions and is also resistant to rust diseases,” she said. See more