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African smallholders to get stress-tolerant maize

April 23rd, 2016 / SciDev.net, UK

B4FA Fellow Samuel Hinneh reports: A new project that aims to provide farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa with stress-tolerant maize varieties has been launched to help the region boost food security. The Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project will apply conventional breeding techniques to develop maize varieties and hybrids capable …

Ugandan scientists start developing aflatoxin-resistant groundnuts

April 21st, 2016 / Sunrise, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Henry Lutaaya reports: It is a busy afternoon at St. Balikuddembe market in down town Kampala. Karimojong girls are working like termites under a temporary shade to remove foreign matter such as stones from broken ground-nuts before their boss hands the stuff over for milling in a locally …

The next generation of GMO food is here, and it’s technically not a GMO

April 21st, 2016 / Business Insider, UK

In a letter released to the public on Monday, chemical giant DuPont Pioneer announced plans to market the first crop that uses a type of precise genetic modification called CRISPR-Cas9. DuPont is the fourth-largest chemical corporation in the world, and it wants to see the product — a hybrid type …

Invasive weed worries sorghum farmers

April 21st, 2016 / Youtube.com

From Uganda B4FA Fellow, Tyaba Abubakar reports: The onset of the March – May rain season in most parts of the country has seen farmers sowing seeds in anticipation of fruitful harvests. But for most sorghum growers around the country, their hopes hang in the balance over a rise in …

Kenya: failure to use biotechnology hurting farmers

April 19th, 2016 / All Africa.com

Farmers are missing out on opportunities to integrate proven cutting edge biotechnology tools that would boost yields and mitigate the impact of climate change, according to a new report released by the International Services for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA). Read …

Labana Rice Mills, a reliable partner – USAID

April 19th, 2016 / elkurebedotcom

B4FA Fellow, Abdallah el-Kurebe reports: USAID Markets II declared Labana Rice Mills, among other rice millers in Nigeria, as a reliable partner for sustainable economic growth. Experts from the Agency, led by the Director of Economic Growth and Environment, Mr. Nduka Okaro are undergoing assessment tours to ascertain the Agency’s impact …

Food insecurity starves Africa of progress

April 19th, 2016 / The Star, Kenya

This year, following the unusually strong El Niño rains, coupled with record-high temperatures afterwards, the UN has warned that about 36 million people across southern and eastern Africa face hunger. Worst hit will be Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan. Hunger is a problem that won’t go away, not …

Cassava in south-east Asia under threat from witches’ broom disease

April 18th, 2016 / The Guardian, UK

Climate change and globalisation are fuelling an explosion in the pests and diseases that afflict south-east Asia’s cassava crops, threatening a multi-billion dollar industry and the staple food of millions of people, a report warns. Cassava, which is originally from South America, is now south-east Asia’s third largest source of …

SARI to release three hybrid maize varieties

April 18th, 2016 / Youtube.com

B4FA Fellow Noah Nash reports: The Savanna Agriculture Research Institute, SARI, will soon release new hybrid maize seed varieties for the 2016 Farming season, which can withstand the climatic conditions in the northern regions. According to a Plant breeder at the SARI, Dr. Meshack Seidu Abdulai, the varieties will provide …

GM crops: African farmers planted 3.5m ha. in 2015

April 18th, 2016 / elkurebedotcom

The International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications (ISAAA) has said that during the last year, African farmers planted a total of 3.5 million hectares of Biotech/GM Crops. This was also during the 20th year of global GM crops commercialization. The Director of the Afri-Center of ISAAA, Dr. Margaret …