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Drought-tolerant maize shows promise in Tanzania

February 20th, 2017 / Alliance for Science, US

Tanzania’s first-ever genetically modified crop — a field trial of drought-tolerant maize intended to benefit small-scale farmers suffering the effects of climate change — is proceeding well and will be harvested imminently, according to scientists overseeing the trial for the Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) project.
Dr. Alois Kullaya, …

Togolese Gilbert Houngbo elected new IFAD boss amid food crisis in Africa

February 16th, 2017 / Daily Nation, Kenya

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on Tuesday elected a new president amid increasing demand for rural agricultural development funding in developing countries
The fund, which is a specialised United Nations agency and international financial institution that invests in eradicating rural poverty in developing countries around the world, elected former …

Scientists explain how plants resist drought

February 15th, 2017 / ISAAA, US

Scientists from the University of Illinois investigated the molecular mechanism that enables plants to lessen water loss while facing drought. They focused on a key hormone known as abscisic acid (ABA) which binds to a protein (PYL receptor) and then causes a series of reactions leading to the closing of …

You CAN manage livestock during droughts

January 31st, 2017 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru reports: Adverse dry weather conditions that have had an impact on agriculture across the country rise the possibility of food insecurity, which is likely to affect many communities.
Much as crop farmers have faced the same challenge over the last three seasons of 2016 stretching through to …

Alien armyworms invade corn in drought-hit southern Africa

January 18th, 2017 / Agweb, US

The fall armyworm that’s native to the Americas has arrived in southern Africa for the first time, wiping out tens of thousands of acres of corn fields. For a region trying to recover from drought, the pest brings renewed fears of food shortages and inflation. The United Nations’ Food and …

Kenyan smallholders team up to confront climate change impacts

January 16th, 2017 / SciDev.net, UK

Smallholder farmers have been losing up to about 80 per cent of their recent harvest, many water sources have dried up and some are having to travel up to 20 kilometres to collect water. Much of the water that is available is of poor quality, with some containing a high …

Food security is West and North Africa’s urgent priority

January 9th, 2017 / The National, UAE

In the field of future studies, the “black elephant” stands tall. A cross between the two idioms “the elephant in the room” and “a black swan”, it is an issue policymakers see but do not adequately address. Within policymaking circles in West Asia and North Africa (WANA), climate change, air …

Climate change is smallholders’ pain

January 6th, 2017 / SciDev.net, UK

Experts use many numbers when talking about climate change. However, rising temperatures, the resulting crop failure and consequent loss of livelihoods and destitution of millions of households are this year’s most important and urgent developments for millions of smallholder farmers across African agro-ecological landscapes.
To illustrate the unfolding crisis, let us …

African breakthroughs to help Aussie wheat growers

January 5th, 2017 / Queensland Country Life, Australia

A RANGE of groundbreaking agricultural research and development work being conducted in Africa will help push sub-Saharan Africa towards food security, but may also have big benefits for Australian agriculture as well.
Deputy director general of research at the International Centre for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) Andrew Noble …

Toward climate-smart agriculture in West Africa

December 19th, 2016 / BioMed Central, UK

Many projections of the impact of climate change on the crop, livestock and fishery production sectors of African agriculture are reported in the literature. However, they may be arguably too general to understand the magnitude of impact and to inform adaptation strategies and policy development efforts that are tailored to …