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Scientist discovers drought tolerance-enhancing fungi in yam

April 6th, 2016 / This Day, Nigeria

A soil scientist, Nkiruka Odoh, has discovered the use of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF), a natural-occurring soil organism to enhance drought tolerance of yams in the face of climate change. Read …

FAO, ministers, experts brainstorm on African agri-food systems

April 6th, 2016 / elkurebedotcom

B4FA Fellow Abdallah el-Kurebe reports:As Fifty-four African ministers of Agriculture and various stakeholders are gathered in Abidjan, capital of Cote de I’Voire, for the 29th Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO’s) Regional Conference for Africa to take stock of the progress made so far in the area of improving the continent’s …

Working to feed the world

April 5th, 2016 / Arizona State University, US

An Arizona State University researcher has figured out a way to modify crops that causes them to use less water and fertilizer but grow more food, an exciting development as food security becomes a critical concern as the world’s population expands. Roberto Gaxiola, an associate professor with the School of …

Project promises hardy maize for Africa

April 4th, 2016 / SciDev.net

A Mexican-African project to develop better and more climate-tolerant maize varieties using traditional breeding techniques has been launched. The partners involved in the Stress-Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project aim to develop varieties that are more tolerant to heat, drought, diseases and low soil fertility than existing types. These efforts …

Project helps African farmers address stresses in maize farming

March 29th, 2016 / Commodities and Fair Trade News,

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 (SSA). The new project will develop new improved varieties …

Reducing food losses and waste in sub-Saharan Africa

March 29th, 2016 / FAO, Italy

Roughly one-third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tonnes — gets lost or wasted. These losses are particularly unfortunate in Africa where 220 million people are estimated to be undernourished. Climate-induced crop failures — including those caused by the ongoing …

El Niño threatens food security in Africa

March 28th, 2016 / Dipnote, US

The second worst El Niño episode in history has hit Africa with devastating force, causing extensive drought and flooding that are in turn causing or exacerbating widespread hunger. El Niño is a complex weather pattern that stems from variations in ocean temperatures; it is not necessarily related to global …

Southern Africa warned of severe food crisis

March 28th, 2016 / eNCA, South Africa

The Famine Early Warning System Network (FEWSNET) has warned of severe food insecurity across the Southern Africa region in 2016-2017 after two years of consecutive drought which have limited crop production. In a new special report entitled “Illustrating the extent and severity of the 2015-2016 drought,” FEWSNET said although temporary …

Seed banks overlook wild relatives of food crops

March 28th, 2016 / SciDec.net.UK

Wild relatives of vital food crops are at risk of going extinct but remain underrepresented in gene banks, scientists warn. There is an urgent need to collect and conserve relatives of plants such as rice, wheat, maize and potato to preserve their genetic diversity, says a paper published this week …

Scientists aim to adapt wheat to a warmer climate with less water

March 26th, 2016 / CIMMYT, Mexico

Scientists battling to increase wheat production by more than 60 percent over the next 35 years to meet projected demand are optimistic that they have begun to unravel the genetic mysteries that will lead to a more productive plant. A recent study conducted at 26 international sites with a new …

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