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Smarter fertilizers can reduce environmental contamination

July 9th, 2019 / Scientific American, US

To feed the world’s growing population, farmers need to increase crop yields. Applying more fertilizer could help. But standard versions work inefficiently and often harm the environment. Fortunately, products that are more ecologically sound – controlled-release fertilizers – are available and becoming increasingly …

CRISPR gene edited soybeans suited for hotter climates offer ‘enormous’ crop yield boost

July 9th, 2019 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Chinese agricultural scientists using gene-editing technology have created new soybean mutants, which could lead to soybean crops in much warmer climates including South China and countries near the Equator.

To create the soybean mutants, research teams from the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences knocked out two genes using the gene-editing tool known as …

African agripreneurs are reversing the farming stigma

July 8th, 2019 / Borgen Magazine, US

Many African millennials perceive farm work as a last resort, a shameful form of employment that is indicative of poverty. Young African agripreneurs (a shortened form of “agricultural entrepreneurs”) are trying to reverse the stigma by professionalizing farming and transforming it into a more lucrative and attractive employment option for …

The first gene-edited soybean opens door to a slew of new CRISPR foods

July 8th, 2019 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

At the beginning of the year 2019, high oleic soybean oil took its place on the market shelves. It contains several times less saturated fatty acids and healthier oleic acid than oil from conventional soybeans. 

The gene-edited crops most striking feature is that the oil made from it forms less trans …

How farmers grow vegetables in hydroponics

July 8th, 2019

B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru writes:

Providing quality nutritive food to millions of people by 2025 will be a major challenge for Uganda. Increasing population, decreasing land, water holding and global warming are some of the major impediments for agriculture, the backbone of this country. Various biotic and abiotic stress factors are threatening …

Sustainable agriculture is the root of Africa’s economic transformation

April 23rd, 2019 / Relief Web

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) stressed that Africa must transform or modernize its agriculture, primarily to feed itself and reduce dependency on imports for agricultural and food items, while fostering the sector to drive the industrialization process.

Speaking on the topic, “Accelerating Sustainable, Economic Transformation in …

A CRISPR approach to saving banana

April 23rd, 2019 / Alliance for Science, US

CRISPR/Cas9‐based genome editing is offering new hope for protecting a critical food security crop by developing climate-smart banana varieties.

Research to identify the genes associated with stress‐tolerant traits and other uses of gene editing and genetic engineering to help banana varieties adapt to a changing climate is highlighted in an April …

Africa making progress in using Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) but more still needs to be done

April 23rd, 2019 / African Brains

Session raised opportunities for scaling up actions considering the role of STI in accelerating efforts to achieve the SDGs under review by Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD5)

The Africa Regional Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Forum was one of the pre-events of the fifth session of the Africa Regional …

What African nations can learn from Rwanda’s growth as an innovation hub

April 23rd, 2019 / New Times, Rwanda

Rwanda is quickly becoming an innovator’s paradise. Technology companies and manufacturers from within and outside the continent are moving to the country to either set up innovation hubs or manufacturing plants.

Last year Andela, which originally launched in Nigeria, announced it was launching a pan-African tech hub in Kigali. The hub …

Biotechnology Has Come To Stay – Bako

April 23rd, 2019 / Leadership, Nigeria

The heads of state and governments of Africa undertook concrete steps to eliminate hunger on the African continent by 2025 during the 23rd Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. The Malabo Declaration states that by 2025, no African should go to bed hungry, therefore one …