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Focusing on smart agriculture across Africa

December 17th, 2019 / Punch

The world is changing and one of the factors driving this change is climate change, which continues to affect the weather and the elements, such as rainfall and storms, among others. These changes affect basically everything that concerns man and his environment.

The impact of these changes is gradually being felt …

Agriculture is part of the climate problem, and the solution

December 17th, 2019 / Forbes Magazine, US

Recently, scientists from the Stockholm Resilience Centre and colleagues have suggested that we have already exceeded the boundaries for climate change, biodiversity loss, and the nitrogen cycle. These limits all share a common factor: agriculture.

 In short, agriculture is part of the problem. We have the responsibility to harness our natural …

A disappointing end to the COP25 climate talks

December 17th, 2019 / European Scientist

The outcome of the two-week-long COP25 conference in Madrid with delegates from almost 200 nations was a partial agreement that asks countries to come up with more ambitious targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Despite some progress, world leaders failed to agree on more ambitious emissions cuts to meet the …

World food prices jump in November 2019

December 12th, 2019 / African Farming, UK

World food prices rose significantly in November, reaching their highest point in more than two years, driven by jumps in the international prices of meat products and vegetable oils.

The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of commonly-traded food commodities, averaged 177.2 points over the …

Can African smallholders farm themselves out of poverty?

December 12th, 2019 / The Conversation, UK

A great deal of research on agriculture in Africa is organised around the premise that intensification can take smallholder farmers out of poverty. The emphasis in programming often focuses on technologies that increase farm productivity and management practices that go along with them. 

Yet the returns of such technologies are not …

Podcast: How nitrogen-fixing bacteria can cut fertilizer use 30-50%

December 12th, 2019 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

In the early 20th century, Fritz Haber and Carl Bosch revolutionized agriculture. The two German chemists developed a technique, now known as the Haber-Bosch process, that converts nitrogen from the air into ammonia, which can be used to fertilize the crops we all rely on for sustenance.  The discovery led to …

WMO’s first state of climate services report focuses on agriculture and food security

December 11th, 2019 / IISD

With an estimated 80% of the world’s food insecure living in degraded environments exposed to recurrent extreme events, the 2019 ‘State of Climate Services: Food and Agriculture’ report explores how to support agriculture in the face of climate variability and change. Produced by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and partners, …

Building resilient agriculture through farmers’ education

December 11th, 2019 / ReliefWed

Agricultural experts and academia drawn from Eastern and Southern African nations called on governments to increase the reach, impact, and institutionalisation of Farmer Field Schools (FFS) through adaptive approaches to ensure that farmers in Africa are fully engaged in sustainable agricultural production and farming as a business.

At FAO’s Subregional Workshop …

Why China’s swine fever scourge should worry you

December 10th, 2019 / Daily Monitor, Uganda

The last time we discussed African swine fever (ASF) was 2018. In the article, we highlighted the devastation the disease had done on various farms.

At around the same time, unbeknown to most farmers, their Chinese counterparts had just begun experiencing the same problem. 

It was the first emergence of the disease …

Revolutionising precision agriculture with high-performance GPS+INS

December 6th, 2019 / Africa Farming, UK

With the global population estimated to reach eight billion people by 2025, feeding the population while conserving the forest and wildlife reserves remains a growing challenge.

According to Septentrio, a global provider of positioning solutions for professional applications in industries such as autonomous vehicles, robotics, construction, marine, logistics and unmanned aerial …