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Climate-smart agriculture: Acting locally, informing globally

May 8th, 2015 / Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security

In 2014 CCAFS helped advance the concept and practice of climate-smart agriculture in farmers’ fields and in global initiatives, through close collaboration with farmers, civil society, governments and researchers. Here are some of the highlights from its 2014 Annual Report. Read …

Tanzania Invaded By the Deadly Papaya Mealy Bug Disease

May 8th, 2015 / AllAfrica.com

The fast spreading and highly destructive papaya mealy bug has invaded Tanzania, IITA has reported. “The pest is rapidly spreading through the coastal areas of Tanzania around Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar,” IITA statement posted on its website says.The pest is attacking important food crops such as papaya and cassava, …

Genetically-Modified Cattle May Help Reshape African Farms

May 7th, 2015 / National Geographic, US

With one gene, molecular geneticist Steve Kemp may someday be able to boost the success of small farms across a huge swath of central Africa. The gene is from a baboon, and it’s important because it produces a protein that kills a diabolical protozoan called Trypanosoma brucei. Trypanosoma brucei causes …

NRM caucus approves controversial GMO bill

May 7th, 2015 / NTV, Uganda

The ruling NRM party’s Parliamentary caucus has approved the controversial Biotechnology and Biosafety Bill that seeks to legalize and regulate the use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in Uganda. Read …

Is Food Security Prompting a New Race for Africa?

May 5th, 2015 / International Policy Digest

The 2008 financial crisis demonstrated the consequences of rising fuel and food prices. In particular, developed and emerging market countries with sparse arable land have become acutely aware of their vulnerability to food security, all the more so in the face of climate change. Moreover, foreign corporations have discovered the …

Is 2015 The Year Soil Becomes Climate Change’s Hottest Topic?

May 5th, 2015 / Climate Progress, UK

Soils — and the microbes that live within them — store three times as much carbon as is in the atmosphere, and four and a half times as much as in all plants and animals. “If the soil carbon reserve is not managed properly,” said Rattan Lal, director of the …

Scientists in Uganda push for law on GMOs

May 4th, 2015 / The East African

B4FA Fellow, Isaac Khisa reports that Ugandan scientists are worried that ongoing research on genetically modified crops may have to be put on hold due to lack of a regulatory framework to guide its production. Andrew Kiggundu, a senior research officer at National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO) said that trials …

Nigeria: Tackling Challenge of Food Scarcity at Scientists’ Confab

May 3rd, 2015 / AllAfrica.com

Unless effective soil management strategies are embraced in Nigeria, the nation should expect an imminent food scarcity, the President of the Soil Society of Nigeria Professor V.O. Chude has said. Read …

Modern Agric Biotech: Lessons From Brazil For Africa

May 1st, 2015 / Newsdiaryonline

Journalists, farmers, scientists, biosafety regulators and agribusiness companies from Argentina, Burkina Faso, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda and the US gathered in Brazil in March, 2015 for the Biotechnology and Science Communication Confidence Building Project. It was meant to enable African countries learn about and improve their food security strategies …

Agriculture: Increase water harvesting in Africa

May 1st, 2015 / Nature, UK

Ensuring that the world’s food needs are met by 2050 will take a doubling of global food production1. To improve agricultural yields on that scale will require a radical rethink of global water-management strategies and policies. Sub-Saharan Africa is the epicentre of this challenge. Read …