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Q&A: Boosting bioenergy in Africa and Latin America

June 9th, 2017 / SciDev.net, UK

To find out why scientists are so optimistic about biofuel production in the developing world, SciDev.Net spoke with Glaucia Mendes Souza, researcher at the Chemistry Institute of the University of São Paulo.
Souza is also coordinator of the Bioenergy Research Program at the Brazilian research foundation FAPESP, and co-editor of …

Uganda: IITA’s breeding efforts to benefit 15,000 farmers

June 9th, 2017 / IITA News

The new 4-year project, run by National Agricultural Research Laboratories (NARL) Kawanda, will be piloted in 3 districts in Mbarara (Western region), Nakaseke district (Central region) and Kabarole district (Rwenzori region). A total of 5,000 households in each region are expected to benefit. The project dubbed “Improving scalable banana agronomy …

Tanzanian farmers urge gov’t to hasten delivery of GE crops

June 8th, 2017 / ISAAA

Farmers in Mwanza Province, North Eastern Tanzania have urged their government to hasten delivery of biotech crops, which they say, may save them from crop failure. The maize, cassava, and cotton farmers whose crop has been severely affected by stalk borer pests, cassava mosaic disease and African cotton bollworm respectively, …

Ghanaians are being urged to give GMO technology a chance

June 8th, 2017 / JoyOnline, Ghana

Ghanaians are being urged to give Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) technology a chance as a possible tool for dealing with the country’s food security challenges.
International Plant Breeding Professor with US-based Cornell University, Sarah Evanega Davidson says Ghana stands a better chance of being food secure if the country does not …

Public learns about biotech for climate smart agriculture at World Environment Day commemoration in Uganda

June 8th, 2017 / ISAAA

“I believe in green energy, green agriculture, and a green economy. We can waste no more time, let us fight together for our planet, ” said French ambassador to Uganda, Ms. Stephanie Rivoal, while speaking on behalf of the European Union at the World Environment Day celebrations in Ibanda district …

Unraveling the tea genome

June 7th, 2017 / Stir, Thailand

The tea plant contains three billion base pairs of DNA, four times more than coffee or cacao. It took five years to unravel but the first high-quality map of the genome was published in May. Now it’s time to get to work coming up with practical applications of the tea …

Study finds large chromosomal swaps key to banana domestication

June 7th, 2017 / Phys.org

Bananas are one of the most important staple crops of the tropics, transported with great care over great distances to satisfy the world’s appetite. And today, with more than half the world’s bananas coming from a single, Cavendish variety, they may increasingly become susceptible to funguses that threaten its livelihood, …

Solving Africa’s food insecurity through biotechnology

June 7th, 2017 / The Tribune, Nigeria

There is an increasing focus on science being linked to providing practical solutions to agricultural problems. There is also increasing awareness of technology, although the channels used for information and creating change in the way information is passed and understood by the receiver are poorly developed.
Biotechnology is no …

A quick and coordinated regional response to fall armyworm required

June 5th, 2017 / CGIAR/CIMMYT

The recent appearance of the fall armyworm, an insect-pest, which causes damage to more than 80 crop species in 14 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, poses a serious challenge and significant risk to the region’s food security.
In a recent interview, Dr B.M. Prasanna, director of the Global Maize Program, CIMMYT and …

AU launches business plan to transform agriculture

June 5th, 2017 / New Vision, Uganda

The African Union (AU) has launched a joint business plan that will be used by member states to implement the CAADP-Malabo declarations. The plan that runs from 2017 to 2021 will support operations at a country level that will support agriculture transformation.
The plan was launched on Wednesday at the official …