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Ghanaian farmers call on government to support biotech outreach

October 8th, 2015 / ISAAA

Ghanaian Farmer Leaders are challenging their government and scientists to intensify outreach to farmers and other stakeholders in order to allay fears on the safety of GM crops and other biosafety issues. In a biotechnology and biosafety sensitization workshop held at Techiman, Central Ghana, the leaders stated that if similar …

Kenyan county executives of agriculture vouch for Bt cotton

October 8th, 2015 / ISAAA

Two Kenyan County Executive Committee members for Agriculture expressed their support for the introduction of biotech cotton in the sub-region after undertaking a recent study tour of India’s biotech cotton sub-sectors including research, farmers’ fields, seed production facilities, and cotton seed oil processing. The study tour aimed at exposing African …

Bangladeshi scientists ready for trial of world’s first ‘Golden Rice’

October 8th, 2015 / The Daily Star

Having successfully completed a trial of the genetically engineered Golden Rice in its transgenic screen house, Bangladesh Rice Research Institute is about to take the rice to confined field trials in the coming Boro season, before taking the variety to production phase. According to WHO data, one in every five …

B4FA Week in Review – 7 October 2015

October 7th, 2015 / B4FA.org

Agricultural leaders and experts met last week in Lusaka, Zambia, for the 2015 African Green Revolution Forum. Themed “Walking the Talk on Youth and Women: Bringing Inclusive Agricultural Markets to Life,” the summit focused on engaging Africa’s fast-growing youth population in the continent’s agribusiness industry as a way of providing jobs, …

Why smart agricultural development is needed in Africa’s savannas

October 7th, 2015 / The Conversation

The vast, 700 million hectare belt of savannas encircling Africa’s equatorial rainforests are considered to be low cost areas for agricultural expansion, based simply on the fact that they are not forests. While these savannas have decent farming potential, converting Africa’s savannas may have high environmental costs.
Read …

How African agriculture exchange internships w/ Israel benefit university students

October 7th, 2015 / Daily Monitor, by B4FA Fellow Lominda Afedraru

Hard-working students are being selected to participate in an exchange internship programme to Israel where they are expected to learn advanced skills in agriculture. The Israeli initiative is open to African countries mainly in West and Central Africa. The first Ugandan students to benefit from this initiative were 41 students, …

Ethiopia: Research reveals indigenous crop varieties face danger

October 6th, 2015 / AllAfrica

Because of little attention given to indigenous crop varieties including teff, wheat and barley in favor of improved seed varieties, Ethiopia’s indigenous crops are facing a serious threat of extinction, according to research jointly conducted by the Ethiopian Biodiversity Institute (EBI) and the International Biodiversity Institute (IBI). Measures are being …

Why development needs social science

October 6th, 2015 / SciDevNet

Social sciences should play a bigger role in African research and development, says B4FA Director Dr David Bennett. “Natural sciences have a much better chance of succeeding at solving Africa’s problems if they are combined with understanding of social factors and relationships, based on locally appropriate agendas,” he writes. Read …

Reliable data is the answer to Africa’s $1 trillion agriculture opportunity

October 6th, 2015 / Quartz Africa

Africa has more than half of the world’s unused arable land, yet Brazil, Indonesia, and Thailand currently export more food products than all of sub-Saharan Africa combined. But the potential for growth is there. What’s needed is for investors and farmers to be better educated about markets, which requires high-quality …

‘Know GMO’ documentary, filming in Africa, challenges anti-GM scare campaign

October 5th, 2015 / Genetic Literacy Project

Forthcoming documentary “Know GMO” aims to quiet the noisy debate around GMOs. Filmmakers were recently in Uganda to interview banana and cassava farmers, scientists and members of Parliament, those invested in seeking solutions to the diseases threatening staple plants in Africa. The film will focus on perspectives from scientists, policymakers …

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