More in this section

Week in Review

B4FA Week in Review – 31 May 2017

May 31st, 2017 / B4FA.org

Earlier this week, Wired magazine published a piece detailing CRISPR inventor Jennifer Doudna’s thoughts on the pros and cons of the gene-editing tool (“CRISPR creator Jennifer Doudna on the promises—and pitfalls—of easy genetic modification”). Among the dangers she lists are perfecting traits in our children and creating hybrid animals as pets – …

B4FA Week in Review – 24 March 2017

May 24th, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in the Norwegian Arctic – meant to be an impenetrable, permanent vault to protect the world’s crop biodiversity – was flooded after extraordinarily high temperatures melted surrounding permafrost. Fortunately, the flood did not damage any of the stored seeds, which are meant to serve as …

B4FA Week in Review – 17 May 2017

May 17th, 2017 / B4FA.org

There are many interesting developments in crop biotech this week. Among them, researchers at the University of Arizona are reported to be closing in on a way of using genetic modification to shut down the production of aflatoxin in maize. Using RNAi technology, which inhibits gene expression, says a summary …

B4FA Week in Review – 10 May 2017

May 10th, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week there is much news from the world of bioscience. First we report on the 110-fold increase in adoption rate of biotech crops globally in the last 21 years of commercialization – growing from 1.7 million hectares in 1996 to 185.1 million hectares in 2016.  Commenting on the Global …

B4FA Week in Review – 3 May 2017

May 3rd, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week, two articles address the fall armyworm problem that continues to plague African farmers. In the Financial Times, “Invasion of fall armyworms ravages crops in 20 African countries & will cause $3bn damage to maize in next 12 months and serious food shortages” not only describes the continent’s struggle …

B4FA Week in Review – 26 April 2017

April 27th, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week we feature a story on microscopic soil organisms, potentially an environmentally friendly way of controlling crop pests and diseases and even protecting against the impacts of climate change. At a time when Africa is battling an outbreak of trans-boundary pests and diseases including the South America fall armyworm, …

B4FA Week in Review – 19 April 2017

April 19th, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week saw the launch of a new journal, Lancet Planetary Health, which focuses on “the interplay between health and the determinants of health in our living and physical world.” In addition to articles on biodiversity loss and the ecology of infectious disease, food systems, nutrition, health and the environment …

B4FA Week in Review – 12 April 2017

April 12th, 2017 / B4FA.org

Bad news is emerging from Kenya this week as armyworm infestation spreads throughout the country, threatening to devastate maize, sorghum, millet and wheat, as well as the possibility of damaging livestock pasture – on top of a drought-inflicted food crisis. According to an article in AllAfrica, worms have been sighted “in Trans …

B4FA Week in Review – 5 April 2017

April 5th, 2017 / B4FA.org

Last week, US president Donald Trump signed an order to undo the Obama administration’s climate policies, making clear that the United States has no intention to meet former pledges to cut carbon emissions. While this reversal is aimed at protecting coal-based energy within the country, its effects are far reaching, …

B4FA Week in Review – 29 March 2017

March 29th, 2017 / B4FA.org

World Water Day took place on 22 March this year, and while much of its focus is on sanitation, this year’s theme of Wastewater touches on the role of water in agriculture. A piece in BizCommunity “Thinking of wastewater as a resource & not a problem to maximise its potential …