In the news...

AU to support research to combat pests threat in agriculture

July 5th, 2018 / Prensa Latina

The African Union (AU) will contribute to the development of research to prevent the threat posed to the farmers of the continent by the increasing presence of the corn borer, it was known today.
In this regard, they will collaborate closely with international scientists from the Insect Institute of Nairobi, Kenya, …

Diversifying agro-ecosystems to suppress crop pests

July 5th, 2018 / AgriLinks

Insect pests are a major cause of crop yield losses around the world and an important cause of food insecurity in developing countries. The development of effective policies to support more sustainable pest management requires a better understanding of the factors that determine farmers’ pest management decision making within the …

Gene editing approach aims for broad disease resistance in staple food crops

July 4th, 2018 / AgriLife Today

A novel gene editing approach could hold the key to broad-spectrum disease resistance in certain staple food crops without causing physical detriment to the plants, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Research scientist.
Dr. Junqi Song, AgriLife Research plant pathologist in Dallas, explores how a “knock-in” gene editing approach might achieve better …

Record-high adoption of GM crops

July 4th, 2018 / ISAAA

The International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) launched the annual report on the Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/GM Crops: 2017 (ISAAA Brief 53) through a media conference held on June 26, 2018 at Acacia Hotel, Manila, Philippines. The report is the 22nd of the ISAAA series of …

Agricultural product to control aflatoxin in crops launched

July 2nd, 2018 / Modern Ghana

Aflasafe GH02, a new agricultural bio control product to help manage aflatoxin contamination in crops and poultry was launched in Accra to ensure food security and food safety in Africa including Ghana.
Aflasafe GH02, developed by International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and its partners, contains native non-toxic strains of Aspergillus …

Ethiopia progresses with GMO crops

July 2nd, 2018 / Alliance for Science, US

In an effort to improve agricultural productivity and safety, Ethiopia has approved the commercial cultivation of genetically modified (GM) cotton and field research on GM maize.
The two crops have been genetically engineered to include genes from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), a common soil bacterium that is widely used to control insect …

Agricultural advances draw opposition that blunts innovation

June 29th, 2018 / Science, US

Scientists are using technology to expand global food production and ease its environmental impact, but advances are being challenged by claims that lack scientific evidence and raise public distrust and concern, a leading agricultural scientist told an American Association for the Advancement of Science audience.
Alison Van Eenennaam traced the advent …

Weeds are winning the war against herbicide resistance

June 28th, 2018 / Scientific American

Herbicides are under evolutionary threat. Can modern agriculture find a new way to fight back?
For farmers, protecting fields from pests and plagues is a constant battle fought on multiple fronts. Many insects have a taste for the same plants humans do, and pathogenic microbes infect leaves, shoots and roots. Then …

Who is afraid of GMOs? Fear peddlers

June 28th, 2018 / Daily Nation, Kenya

Margaret Karembu, Director of International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) AfriCenter and Chair of the Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB) – Kenya Chapter, writes:
The genetically modified organism (GMO) debate remains engulfed in a maelstrom of controversies. Sadly, what is largely a First-World debate continues to increasingly …

EAC beefs up efforts against invasive weed – parthenium hysterophorus

June 28th, 2018 / AllAfrica.com

EAST African countries remain in danger of a devastating weed; parthenium hysterophorus that has already inflicted costs to farmers as experts strain themselves to contain it.
The ECHO East Africa Impact Center in collaboration with other partners and community is working out ways of containing the killer plant that is fast …