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Genetic diversity in our food systems

September 25th, 2015 / Global Plant Council

Our civilization developed with the domestication of plants for food, fiber and shelter about 10,000 years ago. Since then we have made constant improvements to these domesticated plants based on genetic diversity. It is the conservation, evaluation and utilization of this genetic diversity that will be essential for further …

Nigerian researchers release two new maize hybrids

September 22nd, 2015 / The Vanguard, Nigeria

B4FA Fellow Jimoh Babatunde reports: Two new hybrids of maize that will help improve productivity and income of farmers in Nigeria have been released at the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IART), Obafemi Awolowo University in Ibadan. The new maize hybrids – Ife Maizehyb-07 and Ife Maizehyb-08 were …

Closing Africa’s research gap

September 21st, 2015 / The Conversation, UK

A large gap remains in research capacity between Africa and the rest of the world in all scientific disciplines. Addressing the challenges, especially, in the physical sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) sector remains a a major hurdle. In Africa itself, research is mostly dominated by five nations: Egypt, …

Tanzania: Farmers’ use of proper technology pays off in Kilimanjaro

September 14th, 2015 / Daily News

Farmers in two districts of the Kilimanjaro Region have been enjoying bumper harvests since the application of new technology to cope with climate change. Extension officers introduced a system that incorporates terracing and growing drought-resistant crops and cover crops.Read …

Pest-resistant maize opens technological advancement

September 11th, 2015 / The Nation, Kenya

Professor Calestous Juma writes: Agricultural biotechnology critics are right to question the potential negative impact of the global dominance of the technology. However, they are wrong to assume that all the biotechnology introduced in emerging nations is driven by the interests of foreign firms.Kenya is on the cusp of becoming …

Small mills flourishing business with rural communities

September 7th, 2015 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru reports: Small grinding mills are very important machines for many communities in Africa because they can be operated anywhere. There are various types of this milling tools ranging from the ancient types to modern used by communities across Africa Ugandan communities inclusive. …

Africa’s smallholder farmers: Agents of change in a risky climate

September 4th, 2015 / Agriculture for Impact

It can be difficult to avoid sounding hyperbolic when talking about climate change because if current farming practices and resource-heavy ways of life don’t change, the future looks dim. But with the right training and incentives, farmers have shown that they can adopt and drive sustainable agricultural development, which can …

Ten apps to boost African agriculture

September 3rd, 2015 / Venturesafrica.com

Analysts have shown that by 2025 half of Africa’s population will have internet access with about 360 million smartphones on the continent. Also based on their estimation, internet technology could increase annual agricultural productivity in Africa by $3 billion per annum. Throughout the continent, farmers, NGOs and scientists are …

Ghana: agriculture must be seen as serious business

September 2nd, 2015 / The Chronicle, Ghana

According to Ghana’s President Mahama, when people begin to take agriculture as business, they would not only be ensuring food security, but also partnering the government in its efforts to promote agriculture, which is crucial to the rapid socioeconomic development of the country. The President assured the people of the …

244 reasons why GMOs are safe

September 2nd, 2015 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

To date, more than 2000 scientific studies have assessed the safety of these crops in terms of human health and environmental impact. These studies together with several reviews performed on a case by case from regulatory agencies around the world, have enabled a solid and clear scientific consensus: GM crops …