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Apprenticeship will attract young people to agriculture

December 5th, 2018 / Daily Nation, Kenya

Agriculture directly contributes 24 per cent of the annual Kenyan GDP and 27 per cent indirectly.
Apprenticeship would give young people a unique opportunity to earn while as they learn.
Lack of an apprenticeship policy has had adverse impacts on young people interested in agriculture.
The Centre for African Bio-Entrepreneurship has proposed an …

President Kenyatta ties revival of textile sector to GM cotton

November 30th, 2018 / Sunrise, Uganda

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has instructed key government ministries to identify mechanisms for reviving the nation’s cotton production, which could include growing the genetically modified Bt cotton.
The announcement follows the government’s approval last summer of an environmental assessment that authorized the national performance trials that are required prior to commercial …

How mobile phones are helping farmers grow bigger harvests

November 28th, 2018 / Gates Notes

Philanthropist Bill Gates writes:
Whenever I travel to rural parts of the world, the farmers I meet talk about one thing that holds them back: they can’t save their money.
They don’t mean they spend more than they earn. They mean that, literally, they don’t have a safe place to put their …

Scientists use potato wild relatives to produce climate-resilient varieties

November 12th, 2018 / International Potato Center

As millions of small-scale farmers struggle with the effects of climate change, scientists at the International Potato Center (CIP) are using wild potatoes to develop climate-resilient varieties. The resulting potatoes combine heat and drought tolerance with resistance to the most important diseases affecting potato crops, late blight and bacterial wilt, …

Budding farmer, big dreams

November 8th, 2018 / FAO, Italy

Dimiana Nange Clement is a young refugee and a budding farmer. The 11-year-old lives with her family in the Kalobeyei integrated settlement in northern Kenya. The settlement is adjacent to the Kakuma refugee camp, one of the largest such facilities in the world.
Families and schools here are increasingly turning to …

Biotech crops could make Kenya major cotton producer again

October 30th, 2018 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Kenya has been losing at least 4,210 cotton farmers every year for the last 38 years due to low returns and importation of cheaper ready fabric from China and India. This translates to 160,000 farmers or 80 per cent of the estimated 200,000 farmers who practiced cotton farming in the …

Kenya cotton farmers get a presidential nod to grow GM cotton

October 23rd, 2018 / The Exchange, Tanzania

In the 80s and 90s, Kenya cotton industry was thriving with commercial and small scale production in Western, Nyanza, Eastern and Coastal regions relying on the crop for income generation. However, years of neglect and introduction of second hand clothes led to the collapse of both cotton ginneries as well …

Quality seed, key in achieving agricultural productivity

October 19th, 2018 / The Standard, Kenya

Kenya’s ambition to become a newly industrialized middle-income country is enshrined in the government’s national long-term development policy, Vision 2030.
The delivery of this target is driven by a series of medium-term plans. But most importantly, the ‘Big Four Agenda’, which seeks to attain positive agricultural transformation by increasing maize …

Fall army worm is here to stay unless a miracle happens

October 16th, 2018 / The Standard, Kenya

Speaking at a meeting on disaster risk management in Tunis, Monday Ahonsi, the fall army worm portfolio manager at International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), said it was important that stakeholders in agriculture address early enough the strategies by which every country will counter the spread of the pest. …

Why Kenya should shift to genetically modified maize

October 15th, 2018 / CropNuts

The use of Bt maize is not a silver-bullet solution to at our food insecurity challenges, but has potential to contribute towards reduced suffering of the food deficits especially due to maize. By deploying Genetically Modified Maize products, Kenya has the potential of solving food insecurity problems. KALRO has done …