B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru reports:
Cassava is an important source of food and income for small-holder farmers in several African countries, including Uganda because it grows well in conditions of drought and low soil fertility.
However, viral diseases especially Cassava Brown Streak Virus (CBSV) and Cassava Mosaic Virus (CMV) can destroy up to 100 per cent of a cassava crop which can lead to hunger.
According to reports by scientists, healthy cassava harvests could increase incomes for more than half of the households in cassava-growing regions of Uganda and Kenya.
As such, scientists in the region established partnership with the Virus Resistant Cassava for Africa (VIRCA) project in 2006 which includes African and international organisations working together to develop effective solutions for the control of cassava viral diseases.