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Plant genetics, ecologically based farming and the future of food

July 21st, 2017 / John Wiley, US

For 10,000 years, we have altered the genetic makeup of our crops. Conventional approaches are often quite crude, resulting in new varieties through a combination of trial and error, and without knowledge of the precise function of the genes that are being transferred. Such methods include grafting or forced pollinations …

The important relationship between forest landscapes and healthy diets

July 20th, 2017 / Forest News

It’s a bit ironic that while wild foraged ingredients are increasingly popping up on Michelin-starred menus around the world, the communities who have traditionally subsisted on these foods are consuming them less and less.
Baobab fruit and bush mango for vitamins and minerals; bushmeat for fats and micronutrients; bamboo shoots for …

World Population Day 2017: IFPRI models impact of population growth on demand for food

July 19th, 2017 / IFPRI

The current world population of 7.6 billion is now projected to reach 9.8 billion by 2050. As that number grows, so too do concerns about the environment, development, and food security. World Population Day (July 11) seeks to bring awareness to the challenges ahead.
IFPRI’s International Model for Policy Analysis of …

Bio tech crops help African countries

July 18th, 2017 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Michael Ssali writes:
It was reported in this column last month that maize, cassava, and cotton farmers in North Eastern Tanzania, had appealed to senior government officials to give them Genetically Modified (GM) crops to plant in order to avoid persistent crop failure.
This followed vain attempts made for years …

Inside how donors are hurting Africa

July 18th, 2017 / The Southern Times

Money from wealthy nations is hurting Africa and not helping the continent as it continues to be trapped in slower economic growth and rising unemployment, a new report by Tony Blair’s Institute has warned.
The report titled “Making inclusive growth work in Africa” says a number of African countries, among them, …

Agritech will not take root without better communication

July 18th, 2017 / Eco-business

Technology has the potential to raise crop yields, cut fertiliser use, improve farming efficiency and, by its nature, make the world’s oldest and least digitised industry more sustainable.
But without better communication of the benefits to farmers and the end consumer, agritech could suffer the same fate as genetically modified crops …

Aquaculture to play significant role in Africa’s food security – NEPAD

July 14th, 2017 / PM News, Nigeria

The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) on Wednesday said fisheries and aquaculture play a significant role in Africa’s economy, food security and nutrition.
Dr Bernice McLean, a Senior Programme Officer for Fisheries, NEPAD, made the assertion at a stakeholders’ workshop on the Pre-Assessment of the Semi-Industrial Shrimp Fishery in Lagos.
“Fisheries …

South-South cooperation critical in boosting Africa’s agricultural production

July 14th, 2017 / Xinhuanet, China

Uganda is in its second phase of implementing the South to South Cooperation program aimed at boosting agricultural production in the East African country.
Alhaji Jallow, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Country Representative to Uganda, told Xinhua in an interview that there is evidence that the model of farming, featuring sending …

Soil nutrient depletion, major cause of food shortage in Africa

July 11th, 2017 / Xinhuanet, China

Experts at the three-day West Africa Fertilizer and Agri-Business Conference which began here on Monday identified depletion of soil nutrients as one of the key challenges to food security on the African continent.
Eugine Rurangwa, Land and Water Officer at the UN-Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) African Regional Office noted there …

Refugee strikes gold in farming

July 11th, 2017 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru writes:
When one is watching news on TV or reading news on print media about the plight of refugees from South Sudan, the common thing you will see is families leading a difficult life. The story is, however, not the same for Mary Yangi, who has found …