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Four African agricultural start-ups leading the field

February 5th, 2016 / CNN, US

As The World Bank recently reported, food production in sub-Saharan Africa needs to increase by 60 percent over the next 15 years to feed a growing population. But with the challenges to improve production, come new opportunities. Women across the continent are taking matters into their own hands, and kick-starting …

Tech Meets Agriculture at #Hack4Ag in Uganda

February 2nd, 2016 / World Bank

Cellphone usage is expanding in Sub-Saharan Africa, and paving the way for information and communication technologies (ICT) to modernize and boost productivity in the region’s agricultural sector. Apps like Kilimo Salama, which provides farmers with updated climate data, as well as Vet Africa, which helps diagnose livestock diseases, …

Agriculture doesn’t have to be a poor people’s game

February 2nd, 2016 / How we made it in Africa

For decades, farmers in Africa have been portrayed as illiterate, old and poor. But agribusiness is gradually becoming ‘cool’, championed by wealthy public figures, and tech-savvy youth developing new solutions for the industry. Increasingly, agribusiness is being advocated as a viable career for Africa youth, many of whom grew up …

Is cassava the key to tomorrow’s food security?

February 1st, 2016 / International Center for Tropical Agriculture

Cassava is a survivor crop. It can withstand harsh conditions – drought, heat or infertile soils – as agriculture intensifies and populations grow. It is a carbohydrate source for 500 million people globally and a staple in Africa, Asia and South America, which account for 53 percent, 33 percent and …

The need to prioritize farmer perspective

February 1st, 2016 / Alliance for Science, US

For many in Uganda, banana bacterial wilt disease is having devastating effects on their staple carbohydrate, the Matooke banana. Genetic engineering offers a promising option for mitigating its effects. While Matthew Schnurr, PhD, an environmental geographer at Dalhousie University, remains skeptical of the benefits of first generation biotechnologies to smallholder …

Plentiful short rains boost Kenya’s food security

February 1st, 2016 / Ghana News

The report published by food security experts from the Famine Early Warning Systems (FEWS Net), an agency which provides early warning and analysis on food insecurity, says the El Nino-related rains which pounded several parts of Kenya are expected to boost food security in Kenya by helping a significant recovery …

How can we fill 9 billion bowls by 2050

January 29th, 2016 / Thomson Reuters

9 Billion Bowls report focuses on a specific link in the global chain – the production and delivery of food. It’s here where the greatest challenges – and brightest opportunities – for feeding our planet lie. Read …

What urbanisation means for rural areas in Africa

January 28th, 2016 / Can we feed the world?, UK

In 1950 only about a third of the world’s population lived in cities, but rapid population growth has led to increased urbanisation, which has seen this figure rise to 54% in 2014. As this trend is set to continue, by 2050 over two-thirds of the global population will live in …

Saving African cassava from whiteflies

January 28th, 2016 / TED, US

For decades, the farmers of East Africa have battled the African whitefly, a tiny insect that infests the cassava crop. Cassava, also called manioc, arrowroot or tapioca, is an important food all over the world — more than half a billion people (yes, billion with a b) rely on cassava …

Delay to accept GM technology not good for us

January 27th, 2016 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow, Michale Ssale writes, “Finally, our neighbour, Kenya, is set to lift the ban on imports of genetically modified (GM) food crops by the end of this month. The hesitation to accept GM technology in most countries is premised on the fear that it poses a danger to health …