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Uganda: Agriculture scientists want review on GMO law

May 2nd, 2018 / New Vision, Uganda

Agricultural Scientists have called for a review of the recommendations made by the Parliamentary Committee on Science, Technology and Innovation in “The national biosafety act 2017”.
They say the recommendations are too restrictive, arguing that it might lead into a bad law that is likely to stifle efforts of Ugandan scientists …

Let’s recognize Roundup Ready and Bt crops as major contributions to sustainable farming

May 2nd, 2018 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

This is the first in a three-part series making the case that the development of biotech traits for insect resistance and herbicide tolerance are the most substantial innovations in sustainable agriculture in the last three decades. Here, I lay out the context in which I believe they should be assessed …

Postharvest losses: curse to African farming

May 2nd, 2018 / SciDev.net

Adopting cost-effective technologies could help smallholders in Sub-Saharan Africa tackle postharvest losses and increase their income, a report says.
According to the FAO, postharvest losses reduce the income of the continent’s farmers and value chain actors that depend on farmers by about 15 per cent.
The report by the International Food Policy …

Growing more, growing better for Africa’s food security

May 2nd, 2018 / CTA, Netherlands

Professor Sir Gordon Conway writes:
“There are three pillars of sustainable intensification:
Ecological: harnessing nature to support agricultural production. For example, crop rotation or agroforestry are production methods that work with nature to improve soil fertility and build a more sustainable food and nutrition system.
Genetic: new hybrid crops and improved livestock …

Africa has plenty of land. Why is it so hard to make a living from it?

May 2nd, 2018 / The Economist, UK

Surrounded by tangled shrubland, Wisdom Mababe’s farm in central Zambia seems incongruously neat. “In 2002, when I started, it was bare bush,” he says. Each year since, he has bulldozed an area the size of 40 football pitches. Maize grows in ordered rows; cattle graze behind a fence. “The land, …

FAO – Lack of modern farming techniques threaten food security in Africa

April 19th, 2018 / PM News, Nigeria

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has warned that lack of modern farming techniques threatens Africa’s food security.
Josef Kienzle, FAO’s Leader of the Mechanisation task team, said that unless the governments adopt new technologies of farming, the continent will continue relying on food aid.
“There is need for a paradigm …

CTA launches ‘Pitch AgriHack 2018’ to support young agricultural entrepreneurs

April 16th, 2018 / CTA, Netherlands

CTA has launched ‘Pitch AgriHack 2018’ a competition to support young agricultural entrepreneurs (agripreneurs) build viable businesses and boost innovation for a more sustainable agricultural sector. Winning innovations will be awarded up to €15,000, as well as mentoring and networking opportunities.
The theme for this year’s competition is “Women entrepreneurs innovate …

African research in danger due to low prioritisation

April 16th, 2018 / SciDev.net

The future of research in Africa is in jeopardy unless adequate management of national scientific research systems is done, a meeting has heard.
Experts at the meeting said that inadequate management of national scientific research systems is frustrating researchers in Africa and other developing countries.
Top researchers from developed and developing countries …

Kenya approves field trials of bollworm-resistant GMO cotton

April 10th, 2018 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

The National Environment Management Authority [of Kenya] will approve performance trials for genetically modified cotton by May.
Chief compliance officer Margaret Njuki said they are waiting for feedback from the public before they can give a go-ahead.
The sites proposed for the field test include Mwea, Katumani, Kampi ya Mawe, Bura, Perkerra, …

Opposing ‘Golden Rice’ is anti-human

April 10th, 2018 / National Review, US

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if half a million destitute children could be saved each year from blindness and/or death from Vitamin A deficiency? Well, they can be by adding a simple GMO food to their diets known as “golden rice.”
Golden rice is not toxic. It does not genetically engineer, say, …