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B4FA book stirs discussion as MPs review Ugandan biosafety bill

April 15th, 2013

As Ugandan MPs continue to discuss and review the Ugandan National Biotechnology and Biosafety Bill, journalists, politicians and scientists gathered at the launch of B4FA’s recent book, Insights: Africa’s future – can biosciences contribute? in Kampala, Uganda to discuss the future of Ugandan science and innovation for agriculture.

Among a number of guests …

B4FA Nigerian book launch: “We need technology to improve food security”

March 26th, 2013

On 20 March, B4FA held the Nigerian launch of its new book, Insights: Africa’s future … Can biosciences contribute? According to several Nigerian leaders, the book is a welcome call for an open discussion of science, technology and agriculture.
“This is a subject dear to my heart. … I went to the web …

Will it help Nigeria’s farmers? Media Fellows examine plant genetics

March 25th, 2013

Over twenty Nigerian journalists gathered in Abuja from 18-21 March to gain insight into plant genetics and its relevance for Nigerian farmers. The latest group of Media Fellows were joined by B4FA alumni as well as mentors, who included Nigerian, British and American scientists and journalists.
Jamila Hamisu Mai Iyali of Freedom …

Ghanaian journalists investigate bioscience potential for farmers

March 18th, 2013

Over twenty Ghanaian journalists gathered this past week (12-16 March) to learn about – and experience – the biosciences and plant genetics in Accra, Ghana. The B4FA Media Fellows were joined by media fellows from Autumn 2012 and a team of scientific experts and journalism mentors who engaged them in …

B4FA book launch spurs debate about bioscience in Ghana

March 16th, 2013

Discussants at Ghana Insights book launch
On 14 March, Biosciences for Farming in Africa (B4FA) launched its new book of essays, Insights – Africa’s future … can biosciences contribute? at the Ghana International Press Centre.
B4FA welcomed several discussants, including the Hon. Dr. A.Y. Alhassan, the Chair of the Ghanaian Parliament Agriculture Committee, Prof. Josephine …

B4FA Mentor highlights developing countries’ uptake of GM crops

February 25th, 2013

Peter Wamboga-Mugirya, a B4FA Mentor and leading Ugandan journalist, draws attention to the news that more than 50% of GM crops are now planted in developing countries, as revealed in the latest ISAAA report, ‘The global status of commercialised biotech/GM crops‘.
“I think this report also serves as an important source …

Six B4FA Media Fellows get hands-on knowledge of biosciences in action

February 22nd, 2013

As part of their B4FA Media Fellowship, six fellows had the opportunity to make a field trip to Arusha, Tanzania on 18 February 2013 to visit three sites where science is being put into practice to help Tanzania’s farmers: a commercial tissue culture facility, the Selian Agricultural Research Institute (SARI …

East African Business Week Interviews B4FA’s Prof. Chris Leaver

January 25th, 2013

This week, B4FA’s Scientific Advisor, Prof. Chris Leaver was interviewed by East African Business Week‘s Kenan Kalagho – read excerpts below to hear Prof. Leaver’s views on food security, plant genetics and GM crops…

What is Bioscience for farming in Africa?
This is a programme specifically designed to encourage informed discussion about …

Banana breeding and Vitamin A-rich millet: how can plant genetics make a difference?

December 19th, 2012

Lominda Afedraru, a B4FA Media Fellow in Uganda, has recently published two intriguing articles on banana breeding to fight pests and diseases and on the prospect of Vitamin A-rich millet.
In her article on the challenges facing banana production in Uganda, she highlights the diseases that have plagued bananas.  Fortunately, researchers have accepted the …

$25.2m to be devoted to cassava in Africa, reports B4FA Media Fellow

December 16th, 2012

Writing in The East African,  B4FA Media Fellow Isaac Khisa reports that cassava research, breeding and production has recently received a boost in the form of a $25.2m five-year project, dubbed “Next Generation Cassava”, that is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DfID).

The aim of …