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What is maize lethal necrosis

April 5th, 2016 / B4FA

New information from B4FA on this new, devastating disease in East Africa that leads to severe production losses and, in many cases, complete crop failure. The disease prevents the plants from growing tall, causes yellowing and death of the leaves, and stops the ears from growing and setting seeds. Infected …

2016 Global Food Policy Report: how we feed the world is unsustainable

April 4th, 2016 / Eldis.com

The annual IFPRI Global Food Policy Report provides an in-depth look at major food policy developments and events in the past year, and examines key challenges and opportunities for the coming year. The 2016 report This year’s report draws on the latest research on opportunities and challenges the world will …

Project promises hardy maize for Africa

April 4th, 2016 / SciDev.net

A Mexican-African project to develop better and more climate-tolerant maize varieties using traditional breeding techniques has been launched. The partners involved in the Stress-Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project aim to develop varieties that are more tolerant to heat, drought, diseases and low soil fertility than existing types. These efforts …

Good seed agribusinesses will improve food security

March 30th, 2016 / New Ghana

Though the agriculture industry still remains the single largest employer in Ghana, yields over the past years have consistently come short of the required targets to feed the growing population. To improve yields and food security, while cutting back on the 1.5 billion the country already spends on importing basic …

Make agricultural research and data accessible

March 30th, 2016 / SciDev.net, UK

Africa needs to refocus research thinking and agenda on the continent for agriculture to become productive and aid development, say agricultural experts. According to panellists at a SciDev.Net event organised in conjunction with the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications in Nigeria, research is necessary for agricultural growth …

Project helps African farmers address stresses in maize farming

March 29th, 2016 / Commodities and Fair Trade News,

The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and its partners have unveiled a new project – Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) – to diminish devastating environmental effects in maize production that occur simultaneously across many regions in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The new project will develop new improved varieties …

African Union official hails Ugandan scientists on biotech

March 29th, 2016 / New Vision, Uganda

B4FA Fellow, Christopher Bendana, reports: Sunday Akile, the programme officer for legal and policy biosafety at the African Biosafety Network of Expertise (ABNE), has lauded Ugandan scientists doing research on biotechnology. ABNE is an institution of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). “Our scientists have scored high in this …

Reducing food losses and waste in sub-Saharan Africa

March 29th, 2016 / FAO, Italy

Roughly one-third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tonnes — gets lost or wasted. These losses are particularly unfortunate in Africa where 220 million people are estimated to be undernourished. Climate-induced crop failures — including those caused by the ongoing …

El Niño threatens food security in Africa

March 28th, 2016 / Dipnote, US

The second worst El Niño episode in history has hit Africa with devastating force, causing extensive drought and flooding that are in turn causing or exacerbating widespread hunger. El Niño is a complex weather pattern that stems from variations in ocean temperatures; it is not necessarily related to global …

Science meets farming to reveal Africa’s best bean

March 28th, 2016 / SciDev.net, UK

Around 23 million tonnes of beans are grown globally for trade and local consumption every year. Across the world, millions of farmers depend on one or more of the 40,000 known bean varieties. But beans are a fragile crop. They need lots of water and stable temperatures to grow. A …