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Nigeria: Kebbi records bumper millet harvest

September 28th, 2018 / AllAfrica

Millet farmers in Kebbi State are excited over the bumper harvest they recorded this year. Though harvesting of the crop is still ongoing at various farm in the state, many of the farmers are already counting their blessings over the bountiful harvest. Read …

How rice became one of the world’s most important food crops

April 24th, 2018 / Genetic Literacy Project

Rice is a world food staple with an incredible story. Susan McCouch from Cornell University has been studying rice genetics for decades, and directs efforts in rice education in conjunction with the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines. This episode of the Talking Biotech podcast features stories about rice …

How human urine has helped boost Wasieba’s banana farm

July 7th, 2017 / Daily Monitor

Farmer Jennifer Wasieba from Sikusi Village in Manafwa District has substituted the use of compost manure with human urine to fertilise her gardens and since she started, she says her crop and vegetable yields have been impressive. Nitrogen-rich urine is free, abundantly available and does not seem to have any …

Antioxidant-boosting GMO purple rice could decrease cancer and other health risks

July 6th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project

Researchers in China have developed a genetic engineering approach capable of delivering many genes at once and used it to make rice endosperm–seed tissue that provides nutrients to the developing plant embryo–produce high levels of antioxidant-boosting pigments called anthocyanins. The resulting purple endosperm rice holds potential for decreasing the …

Cultivating Angola’s banana crop

July 3rd, 2017 / BBC

The BBC’s Taurai Maduna visits a banana plantation in Caxito in northern Angola to see how fruit farming is proving itself to be a lucrative way of diversifying the economy in the face of a slump in the country’s oil sector. Read …

Maize’s dominance in Africa is being challenged by climate change

May 12th, 2016 / IRIN News

Maize is not as traditional as most people think. It’s an import, and in much of the interior of Africa, only a little over a century old. Its rise to dominance as a food crop has been incredible, but its future is far less assured, as it’s highly sensitive to …

Banana extinction is on the horizon once more

October 19th, 2015 / Food World News

Until 1965, the Gros Michel banana cultivar was the world’s most popular, but it became commercially extinct because of the virulent Panama disease. Today’s most popular commercial banana, the Cavendish, was quickly adopted worldwide due to its immunity to Panama disease, but its lack of genetic diversity makes it vulnerable …

Uganda scientists, US university to breed improved sweet potato

October 14th, 2015 / Daily Monitor, by B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru

Sweet potato, the third most important food crop in East Africa, is threatened by pests and diseases, which are causing low yields. Agricultural scientists and the National Crop Resources Research Institute (NaCRRI) in Namulonge, Uganda, are teaming up with development partners to breed improved varieties of sweet potatoes resistant to …

Could pigeon pea be a life-changer for Malawi’s drought-stricken farmers?

October 13th, 2015 / AllAfrica

The pigeon pea, a high protein pulse, has proven resistant to El Niño’s disastrous effects in Malawi. The FAO has estimated that cereal harvests have decreased by up to 27% compared to last year, and UN’s WFP recently announced that 2.8 million people in Malawi will face hunger in coming …

Farmers in eastern, northern Uganda to get new greengram (mung bean) varieties

September 17th, 2015 / AllAfrica

In eastern and northern Uganda, greengram, popularly known as choroko in Ateso, has been cultivated and consumed a long time. Now, thanks to the Dryland Legume Research Programme, new varieties with such desirable characteristics as early maturation, drought tolerance and higher yields will be available to farmers towards the …