Workshop held on future of Invasive Species Compendium

Abigail Rumsey:

The Invasive Species Compendium is a free, open access resource from CABI, providing comprehensive information about thousands of invasive species. It is great news that it has been decided to keep this resource free for at least five more years.

Originally posted on CABI Invasives Blog:

Members of the Invasive Species Consortium from the US, Mexico, Caribbean and South Pacific met in Washington DC on 4 August and unanimously agreed to keep the Invasive Species Compendium (ISC) an open access resource for a further five years. The ISC has been resourced by a diverse international consortium of government departments, development aid organizations and private companies. Consortium members agreed that work on the ISC to date was of global importance and utility, and should continue.

Invasive Species Compendium website

The Invasive Species Compendium website

The ISC is a global encyclopaedic resource that combines science-based information to support decision-making in invasive species management. Invasive species, such as non-native weeds, animals and microorganisms, are one of the main causes of biodiversity and economic loss worldwide, impacting livelihoods and human health. Since its launch, use of the ISC has continued to grow, now with over 400,000 users in 234 different countries.

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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (20 Aug 14)

Phytoplasmas that do not belong to the apple proliferation group have been found in infected apple trees in Iran © Brad Greenlee (CC BY)

Phytoplasmas that do not belong to the apple proliferation group have been found in infected apple trees in Iran © Brad Greenlee (CC BY)

We’ve selected a few of the latest new geographic, host and species records for plant pests and diseases from CAB Abstracts. Records this fortnight include 2 new phytoplasma species infecting apple trees in Iran,  the first report of Colletotrichum asianum causing anthracnose on Willard mangoes in Sri Lanka and the first report of Groundnut ringspot virus in cucumber fruits in Brazil.

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Food for thought: Cocoa farmers from Ivory Coast taste chocolate for the first time

Cocoa beans drying

Credit: Phil Taylor © CABI

In the past twenty years, the Ivory Coast has produced over 25 million tonnes of cocoa beans; far more than any other country. However, this video suggests that some cocoa farmers might never have seen the end product of the crop they spend their time cultivating. This has implications for the cocoa supply chain: if farmers don’t know what end product they are aiming for, how can they know how, or even why, they should improve quality of their produce? If there is no ‘top-down’ flow of information on the end uses of a crop, can we be sure of a ‘bottom-up’ flow of information on working conditions and pay? Working towards establishing closer relationships between the beginning and the end of the supply chain, could lead to a greater opportunity for smallholder farmers to get a fair deal.

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CABI shares knowledge with African universities

RUFORUM eventEach year, top university representatives from across Africa gather at the RUFORUM conference to learn about new developments in education and exchange ideas for collaboration. This year’s event, held in Maputo, Mozambique, from 21 July – 25 July, was an opportunity for CABI to increase awareness of its knowledge and training resources, especially those made available for the first time through its Plantwise programme. Read more of this post

Update: Plant Health News (13 Aug 14)

A UF/IFAS study has found a simple solution for monitoring the spotted wind drosophila © Hannah Burrack (CC BY)

A UF/IFAS study has found a simple solution for monitoring the spotted wind drosophila © Hannah Burrack (CC BY)

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including  the management of Kanjarai leaf spot of banana in India, a UF/IFAS study into monitoring a major berry pest and the invention of the most efficient technology of vegetable growing in Japan.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (06 Aug 14)

A mixed infection of Papaya ringspot virus and phytoplasma has been detected in India © Scot Nelson  (CC BY-SA)

A mixed infection of Papaya ringspot virus and phytoplasma has been detected in India © Scot Nelson (CC BY-SA)

We’ve selected a few of the latest new geographic, host and species records for plant pests and diseases from CAB Abstracts. Records this fortnight include the first report of Diaporthe pseudomangiferae causing inflorescence rot, rachis, canker, and flower abortion of mango,  the first report of mixed infection of Papaya ringspot virus and phytoplasma in papaya in India and fig fly occurrence in Rio Grande do Sul State.

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Facing the future of crop protection: officials from across Africa join IPPC, Plantwise and FAO for collaboration on plant health

DSC_0194 For farmers across Africa and around the world, tackling crop pest problems in a safe and sustainable way is a major challenge. Currently between 30-40% of crops on average are lost to pests, and while the technology and knowledge exist to reduce losses, vital plant health information remains out of reach for many farmers. It is up to each country to find solutions through research, regulation, education and extension to improve access to knowledge and reporting for sustainable plant health management. This week, four African countries united in Accra to outline actions for coordinated pest management and pesticide risk reduction. The goal: building linkages to enable safe and sustainable food security at a national, regional and global level. (Click here for the French language news story).

This workshop, convened by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) Secretariat, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the CABI-led Plantwise programme  was one in a series of recent efforts to better integrate plant health activities and resources in the region. The first workshop in February 2014 was held by IPPC and Plantwise in Nairobi, Kenya bringing together officials from Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. Following its success, the Accra workshop targeted countries in Western and Southern Africa, namely Ghana, Malawi, Sierra Leone and Zambia. This time, the FAO’s Pesticide Management Group was also on hand to emphasize that countries should not only focus on growing more, but growing more with reduced risk. Other resource persons from Botswana, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Italy, Kenya, Switzerland and the United Kingdom attended the event to share experiences with participants.

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