The role of genetic engineering in agriculture and food has generated enormous interest and controversies, with large-scale embrace by some nations and wholesale bans by others.
Development advocates and professionals are very keen on harnessing the power of agriculture to promote the cause of climate change these days. And rightly so, because agriculture is both a major emitter of greenhouse gases and so a potential force for mitigation, and because billions of people will need to eat, and so adaptation is an absolute necessity.
As food contaminants, aflatoxins are amongst the deadliest. Between 2004 and 2007, contaminated maize killed nearly 200 people in Kenya, left hundreds hospitalised and rendered millions of bags of maize unfit for consumption.
Coffee production provides a quarter of Uganda’s foreign exchange earnings and supports some 1.7 million smallholder farmers, but crop yields are being undermined by disease, pests and inadequate services from agricultural extension officers, as well as climatic changes in the East African country.
Harvesting the benefits of core agricultural research, which often bears on improved crop varieties and plant diseases, increasingly depends on the social and economic conditions into which its seeds are sown.It is a sign of the times that Kanayo F. Nwanze, the president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development who started off as a cassava entomologist when ITTA posted him to Congo in the 1970s, was recently hailed for his efforts to create African billionaires.
Anna Gamusi, has been growing ‘matooke’ - plantains - for over 20 years. She originally learnt how to grow them in her home village of Busolwe in Eastern Uganda, but says that they are no longer grown there.
Bolstering widespread prosperity in Africa is a key necessity if the world is to achieve its commitments to eradicate poverty and hunger by 2030.
High incidents of poverty coupled with decreasing land acreage amid a changing climate pouring havoc on weather patterns has compelled farmers in the Tangakona area of Busia County in western Kenya to embrace an innovative initiative to improve livelihoods.
2016 is the International Year of Pulses, and we at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture are proud to be organizing what promises to be the landmark event, the Joint World Cowpea and Pan-African Grain Legume Research Conference.
Ugandan farmers are increasingly inter-planting coffee, the country’s primary export, and banana, a staple food, as a way of coping with the effects of climate change.
In one Ugandan dialect, 'kiwotoka', describes the steamed look of banana plants affected by the Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (BXW) - a virulent disease that is pushing African farmers out of business and into poverty.
Climate Change needs to be at the top of the country’s agenda, according to a project examining Uganda’s policies. It says the country hasn’t paid enough attention to climate change in national development and agriculture plans and this needs to be turned around before it’s too late.
Finding a way to allow youth to contribute their natural and ample energies to productive causes is increasingly the touchstone issue that will determine future prosperity.
Aflatoxin contamination is a growing threat to trade, food and health security in sub-Saharan Africa, where smallholder farmers are challenged by food production and now climate change, researchers said.
Sometimes the best solutions can appear to be so simple that it’s hard to imagine why they weren’t invented centuries ago.