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What African farmers and processors say about the covid-19 pandemic and lockdowns

Farmers and other key stakeholders in Nigeria, Mali, Niger, Ghana, Burkina Faso and Senegal speak up about how the COVID-19 outbreak is affecting them and what their concerns are as they approach the 2020-2021 cropping season. Digital extension and advisory services, online payments and fund transfers, and virtual learning platforms were among the key needs...

New multipurpose sorghum variety captures attention in Burkina Faso

A new variety of sorghum that delivers high yields of grain and stover is gaining popularity in Burkina Faso, a region where livestock feed remains a challenge. The ICRISAT-developed variety, Soubatimi, can be grown in the rainy and post-rainy seasons, benefiting farmers and livestock owners alike. Mr Leon Badiara, from the Ministry of Animal and Fisheries...

Pulse champions and smart seed innovations boost farmers’ incomes and resilience

Cowpea and groundnut are considered ‘golden grains’ for many women farmers in West Africa, as they make decent money processing these pulse grains into oil or popular snacks, while the leaves are good fodder for their animals. Yet legume cultivation has been limited because of farmers’ poor access to good seeds and market opportunities. Small...

How Scientists Use Seeds to Mitigate Effects of Climate Change

According to the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition, global food production is expected to decrease two percent every decade until 2050. People in sub-Saharan Africa and India who depend on small scale farms for their food will be disproportionately affected by climate change. But plant breeders from the International Crops Research Institute for...

West Africa is threatened by a desert locust invasion

East Africa is continuing to be invaded by desert locusts. A group of researchers from CIRAD recently conducted several simulations to assess the risk of locusts spreading to Chad. In four out of five cases, swarms were predicted to arrive in Chad by mid-June 2020, the summer reproduction period. Chad is the historic gateway for...

Women entrepreneurs empowered through beans – Christella, Tei, Sheila

Sheila Alumo, East Africa Development Company, Uganda Sheila Alumo is the Managing Director of the Eastern Agricultural Development Company Ltd (EADCL) in Soroti town of Eastern Uganda. She is passionate about investing in affordable and yet nutritious products. A lawyer by training, Sheila found her passion in social entrepreneurship. She worked the city life and...

Successful partnership with odisha government for effective agri strategy in times of covid-19

Working closely with the Government of Odisha, ICRISAT has helped develop a mitigation strategy for agriculture for COVID-19-related challenges. It involves safeguarding harvest-ready crops, arranging for distribution of perishables and preparing for the next crop season. Read more in this article, originally published in The Pioneer. COVID-19 could not have caught India at a more vulnerable...

Better seeds and best practices enhance incomes for smallholder farmers in Mali

Farmers in Mali are improving their incomes , earning better livelihoods and enjoying more fulfilling lives through interventions that provide improved varieties of sorghum as well as training in good agriculture practices. Particularly encouraging are the case studies of two farmers from Djirikorola, Mali, who are leading the way in adoption of improved seeds and...

Rescuing Africa’s staple orphan crops-sorghum, millet, cowpea, cassava and sweat potato-with biotechnology could help feed millions of people

The year is 2100 and Africa is home to the world’s largest population ofyoung people, with its current leader – Nigeria – having close to a billion people in a territory smaller than the State of Alaska. Although it’s projected that some of the countries behind this phenomenal growth will be among the fastest-growing economies globally, this does not take...

Improved varieties and access to infrastructure help Malian farmers earn more, save more.

Double yields from improved varieties, access to storage facilities and timely credit through the warrantage systemhas kept sorghum farmers in Mali from selling their harvest at throwaway prices during a glut, helping them earn 50% more income. Farmers are now able to think beyond sustenance and for most of them who had been school dropouts, the...

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