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Farmers must revise their methods to adjust to climate change

November 15th, 2016 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow, Michael Ssali, writes: This year’s World Food Day was marked under the theme “Climate is changing. Food and agriculture must too.” All farmers must revise their methods of production and do some things differently. Most parts of Uganda have not received sufficient rain in recent months and farmers …

Researchers map out the chemical pathways that help plants cope with drought

November 14th, 2016 / Natural Science News, Panama

A team of researchers has pinpointed some of the mechanisms used by plants to cope with drought conditions. The discovery of the specific genes and proteins involved may help plant breeders develop crops better suited to changing conditions brought on by global warming. The details were just published in the …

African researchers develop drought-tolerant GMO maize variety

November 14th, 2016 / Genetic Literacy Project

Maize is a staple food crop for millions of Africans. Despite this fact, African farmers have been harvesting average grain yield of not more than 2 t/ha while there is a potential of producing more than 10 t/ha. Drought is one of the major abiotic constraints contributing to this low …

Unsung Heroes – beyond scientific attention

November 14th, 2016 / Claudia Canales, B4FA

The next of our periodic blogs which discuss food security, with a specific focus on how plant genetic research might contribute to addressing the challenge of feeding a fast-growing global population in increasingly uncertain climatic conditions.
Achieving food security is a complex problem that goes far beyond just producing more food. …

The Trump election – what It might means for African trade

November 11th, 2016 / AFK Insider

When it comes to predicting how President Donald Trump will affect U.S-Africa trade relations, opinions are divided — no surprise in a political victory that relied on a strategy of divide and conquer.
Here are some insights from a variety of sources …
See …

Quest to map Africa’s soil microbiome begins

November 11th, 2016 / Nature, UK

One thousand ziplocked bags of soil from ten countries will form the basis of the first large-scale survey of the microbial life hidden underground in sub-Saharan Africa. The leaders of the African soil microbiology project hope that the data will one day help to drive better agricultural practices and to …

Fact-checking the New York Times on GM crop yields – science responds

November 11th, 2016 / Information Technology & Innovation Foundation, US

On October 29, The New York Times ran a story titled “Doubts About the Promised Bounty of Genetically Modified Crops,” by reporter Danny Hakim. The response from scientists and farmers around the world was immediate and emphatic: The claims advanced in the article are wrong in just about every way …

Why small grains continue to resist winner takes all commercialisation

November 10th, 2016 / NewsDay, Zimbabwe

From Mali to Zimbabwe and South Africa to Southern Sudan, small grains remain an integral part of mainstream local food systems.
There are many reasons why small grains continue to pack a huge socio-economic punch in many countries.
To revisit and stimulate a frank discussion on the power of small grains, eMKambo …

No GMOs, more greenhouse gas

November 10th, 2016 / AgriNews, US

A global ban on genetically modified crops would raise food prices and add the equivalent of nearly a billion tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, a study by researchers from Purdue University shows.
Using a model to assess the economic and environmental value of GMO crops, agricultural economists found that …

USAID has launched a five-year sustainable Shea initiative for seven West African states

November 10th, 2016 /

B4FA Fellow Noah Nash reports: USAID Ghana in partnership with the Global Shea Alliance has launched a five-year sustainable Shea initiative for seven West African countries. The initiative will see to the implementation of promotional and improved sustainable production activities to enhance the Shea industry in West Africa. See …