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Africa: vegetarian diets not always the most climate-friendly, researchers say

September 18th, 2019 / AllAfrica.com

Raising dairy cows for milk, butter and cheese requires large amounts of energy, land and chemical inputs, emitting greenhouse gases

It may be possible to help tackle climate change while still munching on the occasional bacon sandwich or slurping a few oysters, a new study suggested on Tuesday.

Scientists found that diets …

Advanced breeding paves the way for disease-resistant beans

September 12th, 2019 / Phys.org

ETH researchers are involved in the development and implementation of a method to efficiently breed for disease-resistant beans in different regions of the world. Their work will help to improve the livelihood and food security of smallholders in developing countries. Read more … …

A breeding revolution could unleash the potential of potato

September 4th, 2019 / Science Magazine, US

Unlike other major crops, however, the potato has not had a breeding breakthrough of the kind that helped dramatically boost yields during the Green Revolution of the 1950s and 1960s. The reason is that creating a new potato variety is slow and difficult, even by the patient standards of plant …

Is hybrid rice solution to Africa’s food shortage?

August 30th, 2019 / The Standard, Kenya

Every African government today is talking about food and nutrition security and employment for its people especially youth and women.Yet, Africa is still producing too little food for its bourgeoning population to eat. Is the continent really doing everything needed to achieve its aspirations and visions in the agriculture sector?As …

New biosensor provides insight into the stress behavior of plants

August 30th, 2019 / Science Daily

Researchers have developed a method with which they can further investigate an important messenger substance in plants — phosphatidic acid. Using a new biosensor, they are able to track the activity of phosphatidic acid spatially and temporally for the first time and thus, investigate plants that are exposed to stress …

CRISPR and other new breeding techniques could be key to unlocking potential of global wheat production

August 30th, 2019 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru  writes:

To meet a growing global demand for wheat, scientists and policy makers are calling for wider use of new breeding techniques in a quest to increase yields and fight pests, disease and climate change.

While other key commodity crops – including corn, soybeans and cotton – have …

How a fierce debate over GMO could determine the future of agriculture in Africa

August 20th, 2019 / Fast Company

Ghana plans to release genetically modified cowpea seeds this year or next, which would make it the third sub-Saharan African country to approve the local production and sale of GM food. But will they benefit the small farmers they were designed for? Read more … …

Video: CRISPRcon 2019 – panel discussion: Growing for good? gene editing and agriculture

August 19th, 2019 / Global Farmer Network

CRISPR and other gene editing technologies could allow us to transform our food, health, and ecological systems. They also raise important questions about risks, benefits, ethics, equity, and more. We know that the science behind gene editing technologies is just one piece of the puzzle. Just as essential is dialogue …

Subsidies are key to better fertiliser access, study shows

August 16th, 2019

Subsidies for manufacturing companies could help improve access to fertiliser in developing countries without increasing environmental stress, a team of international researchers has proposed.

In an article reviewing scientific evidence, the team presented a strategy to manage global fertiliser use while minimising nitrogen pollution — a common side effect. They note that it will be …

OFAB Nigeria takes biotechnology awareness to schools

August 15th, 2019

The Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB) Nigeria chapter has stepped up its efforts to raise awareness and appreciation on agricultural biotechnology by rolling out a biotechnology awareness program in Nigerian schools.

OFAB inaugurated the first Biotechnology and Biosafety Club (BBClub) in Nigeria where students irrespective of age can be brought together and …