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Germany’s top organic researcher says environmentalists should embrace CRISPR editing

March 10th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

New techniques are currently revolutionizing genetic research. They allow extremely precise changes to the genome…. This so-called genetic surgery changes the debate about the risks and chances of interventions in the genome.
In this Q&A, Urs Niggli, director of the Research Institute for Organic Agriculture in Germany, discusses a new form …

Improved cassava varieties makes a fortune for Akutu

March 10th, 2017 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

Amidst the looming food crisis across the country, Augustine Akutu’s home is akin to an oasis overflowing with cassava tubers. When you visit his home in Amuria District you will mistake it for a rich cassava island. His farmyard is green with improved cassava varieties.
The surrounding farms are yet to …

How CRISPR gene editing can speed up domestication to make crops more sustainable, nutritious

March 10th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Out of the more than 300,000 plant species in existence, only three species – rice, wheat, and maize – account for most of the plant matter that humans consume…. But with CRISPR technology, we don’t have to wait for nature to help us domesticate plants…. [G]ene editing could make, for …

Africa’s green revolution can reduce global poverty

March 9th, 2017 / The African Exponent

Africa’s economic future depends on success in agriculture, which in turn depends on the empowerment of smallholder farmers See …

Technology answer to Africa’s food security challenge, say scientists

March 9th, 2017 / Daily Nation, Kenya

Africa needs to embrace modern technology in Agriculture to ensure food security for its citizens.
Experts meeting in Addis Ababa with media practitioners from across the continent are concerned that crop farming has been left in the hands of older members of the society while the young generation seeks white collar …

Agriculture in 2050: Recalibrating Targets for Sustainable Intensification

March 9th, 2017 / For Climate Research Network

A new paper published in BioScience articulates the need for a new vision and new goals for the sustainable intensification of agriculture, moving away from the often cited statement that food production must double by 2050 to feed the world’s growing population. See …

Should university agricultural research scientists partner with industry?

March 8th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Paul Vincelli, extension professor and Provost’s Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Kentucky writes: “Agricultural scientists who interact with the public often feel under enormous scrutiny. One of the most common concerns is that professional ties with industry—especially obtaining funding from industry—compromise scientific credibility. This concern is particularly acute …

Led by Nigeria, Africa opening door to genetically modified crop cultivation

March 8th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

GM technology holds great benefits and promise for Africa, which needs to boost food output and to feed a growing population—expected to climb from 1.2 billion to 2.4 billion by 2050. About half of that increase is expected to occur in Africa.
Without a sharp increase in food production, Africa faces …

11 African countries doing field tests for GM crops

March 8th, 2017 / AFKinsider

Africa has been reluctant in the past to adopt genetically modified food technology for crop production, but that’s changing, says Steven E. Cerier, a freelance international economist writing for the Genetic Literacy Project. Recent developments suggest that many African countries are prepared to overcome domestic and international opposition to GM …

Growing reliance on foreign crops threatens diversity

March 7th, 2017 / African Farming, UK

New research has revealed that countries increasingly rely on introduced plants for food and need to cooperate to protect crop diversity.
The study, published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, found that awareness of the geographic origin of major food crops is shrinking, threatening conservation and breeding efforts.
Governments should spend …

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