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World Women’s Day: women play vital role in biotech

March 8th, 2018 / ISAAA, US

As the world celebrates the International Women’s Day (IWD) 2018, more women are speaking up for their rights, equality, and justice. With the theme “Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives”, the United Nations Commission puts a focus on the activism of rural women, who make up …

South Africa: farming sector must absorb more black agriculture graduates

March 8th, 2018 / Huffington Post, South Africa

A recent study by Mlungisi Mama that was reported in Farmers Weekly suggests that there are few agricultural blacks graduating with agricultural-related degrees. Mama observed that “at the University of Stellenbosch, the number of black students graduating with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture is on average only slightly more than …

Planting season is here, have you tested your soil yet?

March 7th, 2018 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

Except for a few feed manufacturers who keep to the standards in poultry feed formulations, many feed companies in the country make very poor quality feeds, a situation which has led to huge losses.
Following the release of Uganda’s seasonal climate outlook for March to May this year by Uganda National …

The world needs to live up to promises made on biodiversity. Here’s how

March 5th, 2018 / World Economc Forum, Switzerland

Cristiana Pasca Palmer, Executive Secretary, Convention on Biological Diversity writes:
The signs that we are damaging the planet are everywhere. Denuded forests empty of animals, plastic pollution clogging the oceans, and fewer bees to pollinate our crops, are all testament to the failure of our model of production and consumption to …

Data can help to end malnutrition across Africa

March 5th, 2018 / Nature, UK

Kofi Annan writes:
In 2000, the United Nations hosted the largest gathering of political leaders ever held. At that meeting, all 189 UN member states, plus leading development institutions, committed to the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight ambitious goals for lifting more than one billion people worldwide out of …

Innovative soil scanner supports young Kenyan agropreneurs

March 1st, 2018 / International Fertilizer Association

It’s difficult being a farmer today. Not only are they getting older, but they also have to grow more food on existing farmland to feed the world’s growing population.
One foundation believes that introducing innovative technology can solve both problems by attracting young people to agriculture while providing farmers with the …

Youth-led research highlights key challenges facing young people developing and adopting agricultural technology

March 1st, 2018 / Pan-African Visions

Young African innovators are taking charge of their future and designing innovative agricultural technologies despite lacking access to finance, innovation hubs, and information according to a new report released by the Mastercard Foundation Youth Think Tank. At a launch organized by Restless Development in partnership with the Foundation, 14 youth …

How to put the youth back in agriculture

March 1st, 2018 / BizCommunity, South Africa

Misconceptions about working in agriculture have long bogged down the number of young people opting for a career in this industry. Africa’s young population is often discouraged by the image of punishing work and poor, weather-beaten farmers, so attracting youth to agriculture is no small feat. However, new technologies, methods …

Study shows how plants use ‘baits’ to trap pathogens

February 28th, 2018 / Earlham Institute, UK

A study published in Genome Biology shows how plants use ‘baits’ to recognize and trap disease-causing pathogens before infection can start.
Ksenia Krasileva and her team from Earlham Institute, together with researchers from The Sainsbury Laboratory, used phylogenetic analyses to identify how these ‘bait’ genes are distributed throughout different wild and …

Ghana CSIR affirms safety of GM crops

February 28th, 2018 / ISAAA, US

Genetically modified crops are safer than conventional ones as they go through very rigorous tests and processes over many years before they are released onto the market, a biosafety and environmentalist research scientist at the Crop Research Institute of Ghana’s Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has said. Charles …