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Tackling post-harvest losses towards food security

November 9th, 2015 / Leadership, Nigeria

Post-harvest losses are losses which occur between the time of harvest and the time of human consumption and can be divided into quantitative and qualitative losses. Whichever way they occur, it is usually a loss to the farmer in particular and the nation at large as the value of that …

Vitamin enhanced GMO crops … maybe cassava

November 6th, 2015 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Bangladesh announced last month that it was moving ahead with field trials of Golden Rice, which in itself represents a big step forward in fighting vitamin-A deficiency, a condition that kills hundreds of thousands globally each year. But perhaps the biggest impact of that decision is that it paves the …

Amaranth has bundles of money hidden in its grain

November 3rd, 2015 / Farmbiz Africa, Kenya

Amaranth can easily be mistaken for just another wondering weed. Yet, while some people sparingly use the plant as vegetables, Ann Muthoni, a nutrition expert in Kenya, is making unique flour out of it, which she sells through various supermarkets across the country including Tuskys, Clean Shelf and Kamidi. …

Help improve online data on agricultural biodiversity

October 26th, 2015 / Biodiversity International

In 2015, the GBIF Secretariat and Bioversity International created a ‘Task Group on Data Fitness for Use in Agrobiodiversity’ to improve the quality and quantity of data on the GBIF portal that are important to agricultural biodiversity research and policy communities. These include data on agricultural biodiversity monitoring, gaps in …

We need the farms of the future today

October 26th, 2015 / Newsweek, US

The world population is expected to grow to 9.6 billion by 2050, and according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), if we want to avoid mass malnutrition, we’re going to have to up our food production by 70 percent by 2050. The problem is most …

Kenya: What scientists are doing to eliminate deadly wheat rust

October 20th, 2015 / Daily Nation

Wheat rust cuts production by up to 70%, heaping losses on farmers. To learn more, read this interview with Ruth Wanyera, a plant pathologist and principal research scientist at Food Crop Research Institute, Njoro, and a winner of the 2015 Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI) Gene Stewardship Award. (Photo: Ron …

Uganda scientists, US university to breed improved sweet potato

October 14th, 2015 / Daily Monitor, by B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru

Sweet potato, the third most important food crop in East Africa, is threatened by pests and diseases, which are causing low yields. Agricultural scientists and the National Crop Resources Research Institute (NaCRRI) in Namulonge, Uganda, are teaming up with development partners to breed improved varieties of sweet potatoes resistant to …

How supercomputers and plant genetics will provide farmers better seeds

October 5th, 2015 / Genetic Literacy Project

As genomic sequencing has decreased in price, the amount of data available to researchers has grown exponentially. More and more scientists are turning to computational tools to help organize and analyze the genetic data, which could someday be key to feeding a growing world.Read …

Stakeholders from Africa visit Bt cotton fields in India

October 2nd, 2015 / ISAAA, US

Delegates from 29 East and South African cotton growing countries participate in a week long study tour to Bt cotton fields in India from September 27 to October 2, 2015. The “Seeing is believing” study tour is being conducted by the South Asia Biotechnology Centre (SABC), New Delhi, in …

China funding agriculture research lab in Kenya

September 30th, 2015 / African Farming, UK

The Chinese government is funding a laboratory at a Kenyan university that will train students and conduct agricultural research. The lab will come up in Egerton University which has its main campus in Njoro in south-western Kenya. A crop molecular laboratory is under construction in the campus, in collaboration …