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Orphan gene could boost protein content of rice, corn and soya

November 25th, 2015 / Iowa State University, US

A recently published study from two Iowa State University scientists shows that a gene found only in a single plant species can increase protein content when introduced into staple crops. The research has implications for a wide array of crops, especially for staples grown in the developing world, where …

B4FA Week in Review – 25 November 2015

November 25th, 2015 / B4FA.org

As governments prepare for the UNFCCC climate conference, which starts in Paris in just a few days, headlines abound with stories about how wayward climate patterns are set to affect many – and already are. A World Bank report states climate change could push 100 million people back into poverty …

SARI complete second stage trials for GM cotton varieties

November 24th, 2015 / YouTube.com

B4FA Fellow Noah Nash files a video report: The Savanna Agricultural Research Institute (SARI) has completed it second stage confined field trials a Roundup Ready Herbicides Genetically Modified Cotton variety which seeks to monitor the effects of glyphosate formulations when applied on weed and the cotton plant as means …

We need a voluntary international agreement to protect soil

November 24th, 2015 / Nature, UK

The history now being written in the world’s soils is not so rosy. Every year, 75 billion tonnes of crop soil are lost worldwide to erosion by wind and water, and through agriculture; this costs about US$400 billion a year3. Only a few countries have national legislation protecting soil, …

Pass the biotechnology and biosafety bill, Sekandi says

November 24th, 2015 / New Vision, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Christopher Bendana reports: Vice President Edward Kiwaunka Sekandi has called upon Parliament to pass the Biotechnology and Biosafety Bill 2012. The Bill in meant to provide a regulatory framework to ensure safety in research and development of modern biotechnology in Uganda. Sekandi said that genetic engineering; a …

Aflatoxins poisoning health and trade in sub-Saharan Africa

November 23rd, 2015 / AllAfrica.com

Aflatoxin contamination is a growing threat to trade, food and health security in sub-Saharan Africa, where smallholder farmers are challenged by food production and now climate change. Aflatoxins are toxic and cancer causing poisons produced by certain green mould fungus that naturally occurs in the soil. The poisons have …

Advancing nutrition and sustainable development

November 23rd, 2015 / International Food Policy Research Institute, US

AKINWUMI ADESINA PRESIDENT, AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK says “The world needs nutrition accountability. Food insecurity, hunger, and malnutrition affecting millions of the poor and chil- dren are simply unacceptable. The most important infrastructure is “gray matter infrastructure.” Yet millions of children in Africa grow up without adequate nutrition and become …

CSIR-SARI evaluates herbicides on GM cotton varieties

November 23rd, 2015 / Ghanaweb.com

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – Savannah Agricultural Research Institute (CSIR-SARI) has begun undertaking a confined field research on the performance of Roundup Ready herbicides on cotton varieties being cultivated in the country. Dr Emmanuel Chamba, Principal Investigator at CSIR-SARI, who is the Lead Researcher on the programme, …

Invest in agriculture, not oil – Mo Ibrahim to Ghana

November 20th, 2015 / Pulse.com, Ghana

“You can live without oil, you cannot live without food. So agriculture should be sexy. It should be nice, interesting – not boring,” Mo Ibrahim said in as address to the gathering at the John Agyekum Kufuor Foundation 4 Global Development Lecture Series at the University of Ghana, Legon on …

New crop products offer hope against disease and drought

November 20th, 2015 / The Sunrise, Uganda

The National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO) has released new food crop products for Cassava, Maize, Sweet Potato and Wheat which offer hope in addressing prevailing disease and drought stresses. Among the new releases are two new Cassava lines NAROCASS1 and NAROCASS2 which the research organisation says are high-yielding, aromatic, …