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Vouchers instead of food

COVID-19: How citizen-led social protection could help to cushion food systems in informal settlements. One week ago, private food deliveries by Kenyan citizens were pouring into informal settlements in Nairobi, where 60-70% of residents live. These donations were intended to help provide for households that had lost income due to COVID-19 measures. But Billian Ojiwa, founder...

A rich harvest of not just legumes but of changed destinies and better nutrition

Charting the 12 year course of the Tropical Legumes project Sowing Legume Seeds, Reaping Cash: A Renaissance within Communities in Sub-Saharan Africa(A Springer Open publication. Download here) This compilation of real-life ‘impact’ stories from the Tropical Legumes projects over the past 12 years makes for an engaging read. You have stories of courage and hope, of...

Certified seed fetches twice the market rate: farmers hitch onto seed production

Growing certified improved seed of millets and legumes is a profitable business enterprise for farmer cooperatives in Mali. Improved seed summon twice the market rate and the turnover is so high that existing storage facilities can accommodate only a quarter of the production. Increased farmer incomes from seed production and as well as increased yields...

Scientific officer- applied research data management

ICRISAT seeks applications from candidates who are dynamic and highly skilled in data management, computer database applications & productivity software to assist in plant breeding activities and field research. There are two positions at ICRISAT Research Centers; one will be based in Bamako, Mali and the other in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.  ICRISAT is a non-profit, non-political organization...

Nutrition, gender and breeding modernization: focal points of west and central Africa research agenda

The spotlight was on biofortification, gender equity and breeding program modernization at the recent Regional Planning Meeting of ICRISAT West and Central Africa (WCA), as members charted forward-looking plans. With an emphasis on modernizing ICRISAT WCA’s crop breeding programs, the members discussed the need for greater investments in establishing and strengthening the Regional Crop Improvement...

Consumers feed strong appetite for traditional grains

Deep in Makueni County’s Kiboko Crops Research Station, bird chasers whistle and run after destructive quelea birds that are ever eager to devour sorghums and millets. Kiboko is Kenya’s top research facility for arid and rangeland crops. Different varieties of sorghum, millet and pigeon peas being bred by researchers have been planted in neat rows...

Helping African smallholders get access to better seeds

Nairobi / Basel, February 27, 2020. Seven local seed companies from across Africa have won the inaugural Seeds for Impact Program (SIP) competition. They will receive financial and technical assistance to help them supply improved seed to more smallholder farmers. SIP is implemented by the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) with funding from the Alliance for...

Rest in peace Dr. Mamourou Diourté

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Dr. Mamourou Diourté who until his death on March 8, 2020, was the national coordinator for HOPE II project in Mali, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Dr. Mamourou who died at the age of 65 after a long illness, held this position...

ICRISAT launches fast breeding facility, RapidGen

RapidGen will shorten the six-seven year window significantly. When used with the full suite of breeding acceleration techniques, RapidGen can reduce the breeding cycle by an estimated 40 percent for most crops. Efforts to modernise crop breeding took a giant leap recently with the unveiling of ICRISAT’s new facility, which is projected to significantly lower...

Feeding the future: millet and sorghum grains make big gains in Mali

USAID delegation visited Mali to see impacts from projects undertaken by three CGIAR institutions A recent study revealed that sorghum and millet yields increased up to 51% and 72% respectively during the period 2014-2019 in Mali. This was achieved by enhancing farmers’ knowledge of and improving their access to available productivity-enhancing technologies, including seed treatment,...

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