RTB In the Media

Grant will support expanded use of artificial intelligence for crop health

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — A research team developing artificial-intelligence-based solutions for diagnosing and managing threats to crop health has received a grant to expand the technology to assist more smallholder farmers around the world. CGIAR, an international agricultural research consortium, awarded the project a $250,000 scale-up grant under its Inspire Challenge program, part of the […]

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In the war on emerging crop diseases, scientists develop new ‘War Room’ simulations

Farmers rely on seed systems for access to high-quality, disease-free planting material at the start of the season. Good seed systems ensure access to seed for a variety of crops that are affordable and fully available at the start of the season. Unfortunately, this is not a reality for many smallholder farmers in developing countries, […]

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Lowly camote to save the day – for food security and climate-change resiliency

Camote (sweet potato) chips, anyone?  How about camote cue, or the simple boiled camote?  Did you know there is more to the lowly sweet potato than your favorite merienda (snack) food? Among other high-value crops, camote, and other root and tuber crops are now being considered for development by the Department of Agriculture (DA) to prop up […]

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Africa and Asia will propel the world’s population towards 10 billion – but are their food systems ready?

Improving access to other key inputs like water and fertilizer, as well as wider technical services such as agricultural machinery, would help to boost resources, but change needs to happen fast Talk of the global population reaching 10 billion by 2050 has been around for some time. Yet, this statistic actually hides the real source of this […]

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FoodSTART+ featured in the latest iMPACT magazine issue

FoodSTART+ Principal Investigator, Diego Naziri, and CIAT Market Access Specialist, Brice Even shared how the partnership between grant projects and investment projects can facilitate taking innovations to scale. From the experience of FoodSTART+, the success of the project highly depends on the outcome of the partnership with investment projects — who are the primary drivers […]

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University of Florida Researchers Develop Model to Help Keep Crop Seeds Healthy

Working with international researchers, University of Florida scientists have developed a model that will help protect good seeds, which are necessary to plant healthy crops and determine what areas are at higher risk for unhealthy seeds. In many parts of the world, people lack adequate access to nutritious food because there aren’t enough quality seeds […]

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Calling On Nature To Combat Insect Pests In Vietnam’s Cassava Crop

“Good bugs, huh?” –farmers and homeowners alike all too often give a blank stare when questioned about the beneficial insects that occur on their respective farm, backyard or flower patch. Though insects abound within natural and agricultural ecosystems across the globe, and a fair share of them provide vital services to humanity, we as human […]

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World Potato Congress highlights scientific advances

Tubers were the talk of the town in Cusco, Peru during the week of May 27, when the 10th World Potato Congress (WPC) and the 28th Congress of the Latin American Potato Association (ALAP) were held together for the first time. The event drew more than 800 participants from 50 countries to the potato’s center […]

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Tanzania: Banana Experts Meet to Discuss Hybrid Varieties

An international project whose goal is to boost banana production in Tanzania and Uganda brings together a team of international researchers to deliberate on delivery of hybrid varieties to farmers. The team will starting today to Friday gather at Arusha-based Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST) to review their progress and plan […]

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New mobile app diagnoses crop diseases in the field and alerts rural farmers

Researchers who developed a new mobile application that uses artificial intelligence to accurately diagnose crop diseases in the field have won a $100,000 award to help expand their project to help millions of small-scale farmers across Africa. Cassava brown streak disease is spreading westward across the African continent and, together with cassava mosaic disease, threatens the food […]

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Saving the world – Nature editorial

A long and almost uncrossable distance separates fundamental plant research carried out predominantly in rich countries, and the production of better crops in the fields of poor farmers from developing regions. A unique network of international organizations involved in global agriculture helps bridge that chasm.  Continue reading on Nature Plants

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BASICS targets sustainable seed system to transform cassava production

Stakeholders in the seed sector have been advised on the need to work towards a sustainable seed system in Nigeria. Project Director, Building an Economically Sustainable Integrated Cassava Seed System (BASICS), Hemant Nitturkar, who made the call at a national stakeholder conference on cassava seed system, held at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), […]

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Uganda: Search for Ways to Improve Cassava Shelf Life

Millions of Uganda rely on cassava not only for food security but as a means of livelihood. However, an issue of concern is its shelf life. To address this, a research is being conducted on technologies to enable longer storage of cassava as well as the economic feasibility. Known as RTB-Endure, the project is implemented […]

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Stakeholders combat banana bunchy top disease

The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) has intensified efforts aimed at preventing the further spread of Banana Bunchy Top Disease, that is debilitating banana production in sub-Saharan Africa. The disease, first discovered in Nigeria, in Odologun community, in Yewa South council area in 2012 by IITA in collaboration with University of Ibadan and Nigerian […]

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Nigeria: $11.6m for Sustainable Cassava Seed System

A four-year $11.6m project ending 2019 to develop a commercially sustainable cassava seed value chain in Nigeria, was recently launched at the headquarters of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Ibadan, Nigeria. Titled ‘Building Sustainable, Integrated Seed System for Cassava in Nigeria’ the project funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is led […]

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New Project To Build Commercially Sustainable Cassava Seed System In Nigeria

A four-year project (2015 – 2019) to develop a commercially sustainable cassava seed value chain in Nigeria, was officially launched Monday 18 April at a public event at the headquarters of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Ibadan, Nigeria. Titled ‘Building a Sustainable, Integrated Seed System for Cassava in Nigeria’ (BASICS), the $USD11.6 […]

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Uganda: High post harvest losses in cooking bananas

Cooking banana is the main staple crop in Uganda produced mostly by smallholders for food and income. However, the cooking banana value chain players face risks of high postharvest losses due to the short green life of bananas and damage arising from poor handling of the produce after it is harvested, leading to high physical […]

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Making use of sweetpotato vines as silage

When James Francis Ojakol enrolled for a Master degree in animal science at Makerere University, he had no idea how he would finance his studies nor what area to study. An opportunity from International Potato Center (CIP) to fund a research project fell into his lap. Uganda is hosting a three-year $4m (Shs13.4b) project, funded […]

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Agri-food systems research and poverty in Ghana

In Ghana, small scale farmers are national assets. They form the bulk of the workforce in the agricultural sector, which is totally dependent on water availability and are the ones feeding the nation. But the sector is no longer as productive as it used to be – shrinking land for farming due to increasing population, […]

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Is cassava the key to tomorrow’s food security?

Huyen Thi Phuc, a small-scale farmer in southern Vietnam, has grown cassava and cashew nuts for 15 years. The cassava, a root crop, brings in more than half her income. She grows it because it doesn’t require heavy labor or fertilizer, and it’s one of the few crops that grow in the poor soil on […]

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