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Youth multiplying drought-resistant seed

April 27th, 2016 / The Ethiopian Herald

Youth farmers involved in multiplying drought and rust resistant new wheat seed variety are benefitting. Minaleh Agegnew, in his late 20s, is a resident of Kurmi Georgis Kebele of rural Gojam. He is landless. Together with his friends he rent a farmland at a cost of 3,000 Birr and …

Children bear brunt of southern Africa’s devastating drought

April 26th, 2016 / The Guardian, UK

Chidyamakondo high school, near Masvingo in southern Zimbabwe, has won the national girls’ football championships three years in a row. But that cherished record – and far, far more – is now at risk. “Students are fainting, struggling to concentrate in lessons, dropping out of school … we’re having to …

African smallholders to get stress-tolerant maize

April 23rd, 2016 / SciDev.net, UK

B4FA Fellow Samuel Hinneh reports: A new project that aims to provide farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa with stress-tolerant maize varieties has been launched to help the region boost food security. The Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project will apply conventional breeding techniques to develop maize varieties and hybrids capable …

The next generation of GMO food is here, and it’s technically not a GMO

April 21st, 2016 / Business Insider, UK

In a letter released to the public on Monday, chemical giant DuPont Pioneer announced plans to market the first crop that uses a type of precise genetic modification called CRISPR-Cas9. DuPont is the fourth-largest chemical corporation in the world, and it wants to see the product — a hybrid type …

Food insecurity starves Africa of progress

April 19th, 2016 / The Star, Kenya

This year, following the unusually strong El Niño rains, coupled with record-high temperatures afterwards, the UN has warned that about 36 million people across southern and eastern Africa face hunger. Worst hit will be Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan. Hunger is a problem that won’t go away, not …

Cassava in south-east Asia under threat from witches’ broom disease

April 18th, 2016 / The Guardian, UK

Climate change and globalisation are fuelling an explosion in the pests and diseases that afflict south-east Asia’s cassava crops, threatening a multi-billion dollar industry and the staple food of millions of people, a report warns. Cassava, which is originally from South America, is now south-east Asia’s third largest source of …

Namibia: expectations for maize harvest improve dramatically

April 18th, 2016 / AllAfrica.com

Late rains have dramatically changed the expectations of the total white maize harvest from the Maize Triangle and immediate environs. The total maize harvest is now projected at more than 44 000 tonnes, after 9 391 hectares were planted countrywide. Almost 4 400 hectares were planted in the Maize Triangle, …

Food security and climate change: new frontiers in international security

April 18th, 2016 / Centra for American Progress

In 2010, President Barack Obama’s National Security Strategy, or NSS—the periodic planning document that assesses the risks facing the country and outlines the United States’ response—for the first time recognized climate change as a security threat. The document noted that, “The danger from climate change is real, urgent and severe,” …

Will severe droughts in Africa open door for imports, acceptance of GM crops?

April 18th, 2016 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

A scorching drought has enveloped southern Africa prompting a significant decline in food production. The World Food Program (WFP) said as many as 49 million people in southern Africa could be affected. The drought is being blamed on the longest El Nino weather pattern in thirty-five years. But a huge …

New project to help African farmers address multiple stresses In maize farming

April 13th, 2016 / Modern Ghana

The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and its partners have unveiled a new project – Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) – to diminish devastating environmental effects in maize production that occur simultaneously across many regions in sub-Saharan Africa. The new project will develop new improved varieties and …

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