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SARI applies science in addressing post food losses

October 4th, 2018 / Daily Guide, Ghana

Scientists from the Savannah Agriculture Research Institute (SARI) under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have introduced and exposed close to 300 farmers to two improved varieties of cowpea in the Binduri and Bawku West Districts of the Upper East Region.
The beneficiary farmers are those who farm along …

Pioneering biologists create a new crop through genome editing

October 3rd, 2018 / Phys.org

Crops such as wheat and maize have undergone a breeding process lasting thousands of years, in the course of which mankind has gradually modified the properties of wild plants into highly cultivated variants. One motive was higher yields. A side effect of this breeding has been a reduction in genetic …

New project to promote employability for youth in agriculture

October 3rd, 2018 / IPP Media

The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) and the NEPAD Agency launched the Agricultural Technical Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) project.
Over 80 stakeholders from all 9 provinces gathered for a two-day inception workshop.
The project was officially launched by Mr Joe Kgobokoe, Deputy Director General, Policy, Planning & Monitoring & …

IRRI opens regional office in Africa

October 3rd, 2018 / World-Grain.com

International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) opened a new regional office in Nairobi to help Africa boost rice productivity and self-sufficiency.
The office was inaugurated by Professor Hamadi Boga, Principal Secretary, Kenyan State Department of Agriculture Research, who was represented by Margaret Makelo; Jim Godfrey, chairman of the board of trustees and …

CRISPR tames the wild ground cherry

October 2nd, 2018 / Boyce Thompson Institute

The groundcherry (Physalis pruinosa) is approximately the same size as a cherry tomato, but with a much sweeter flavor. The tropical-tasting fruit is also a powerhouse in terms of nutritional value. Packed with Vitamin C, Vitamin B, beta-carotene, phytosterols, and antioxidants, plus anti-inflammatory and medicinal properties, this tiny fruit might just …

We’ll only stop young African scientists from leaving if we help them fix these key problems at home

October 2nd, 2018 / Quartz Africa

Young African scientists face persistent barriers which cause them to leave their own countries, and even academia. This means the continent’s work force loses highly trained people who are crucial for scientific and technological advancement, and for economic development. A number of factors contribute to this trend, including a desire for higher pay, …

10 elements of agroecology that can guide us toward sustainable food systems

October 2nd, 2018 / FAO

Agroecology is both the concept and practice of managing and boosting nature’s own ecological processes to improve productivity and avoid farming griefs, such as pest infestation, disease or degradation. Focusing on plants, animals, humans, the environment and the system as a whole, agroecology is a science and a social response, …

Kenyan entrepreneur wins global award for increasing farmers’ yields with solar energy

October 1st, 2018 / FarmBiz Africa

Dysmus Kisilu, a Kenyan entrepreneur has won a Progress Award in recognition of his efforts in providing smallholder farmers especially from rural Kenya with solar-powered agricultural tools and services upping their production. Kisilu is the founder of Solar Gel, a company that provides small Kenyan farms with renewable energy services to …

Global actions needed to combat fall armyworm

October 1st, 2018 / SciDevNet

Fighting fall armyworm requires global efforts as the pest could spread to more countries, warn scientists. Within the past two years, Fall armyworm has spread to 44 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, threatening the food security of about 200 million people who depend on maize as a staple food crop, experts say. The detection …

More than a thousand vegetables, many of them forgotten

October 1st, 2018 / Biodiversity International

World diets are becoming more similar and based on fewer crops. A much greater diversity of vegetables exists in traditional food systems, but many of these crops are poorly integrated in current markets and diets. A recent study by Bioversity International scientists in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization …