World Food Prize 2015

Fazle Hasan Abed. Photo: BRAC, via Wikimedia Commons

Sir Fazle Hasan Abed. Photo: BRAC, via Wikimedia Commons

Earlier this month, Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, founder and chairman of BRAC, was awarded the 2015 World Food Prize, which honours contributions to the improvement of food supply. BRAC (formally Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee) is the largest development organisation in the world and has been working to enhance food security and alleviate poverty since it was founded by Sir Fazle in 1972. For over 40 years, BRAC, which operates in 11 countries around the world, has implemented a range of development programmes that have benefited nearly 150 million people. Sir Fazle (pictured, left) has applauded these people as “the real heroes” in the BRAC story.  Read more of this post

Closing the gender gap for a food-secure future #AgGenderGap

Farmer with a bunch of AmaranthIn the video below, inspiring women share their views on closing the gender gap in farming under climate change. Read more of this post

Behind the scenes of Plantwise plant clinics in Uganda

PhD student, Andrew Tock, of the Warwick Crop Centre, has spent three months monitoring Plantwise plant clinic success in Uganda as part of a BBSRC-funded Doctoral Training Partnership. During this time, he kept a research diary (video above), describing his experiences in Uganda and the day-to-day work of plant doctors in the field.

To read an interview with Andrew, visit the BBSRC website: http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/news/food-security/2014/141029-f-plant-clinics-in-uganda.aspx

Update: Plant Health News (27 Aug 14)

Soil health issues cost African farmers $4 billion a year in lost crop productivity © Gates Foundation (CC BY-NC-ND)

Soil health issues cost African farmers $4 billion a year in lost crop productivity © Gates Foundation (CC BY-NC-ND)

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including surveillance robots that can detect weeds and pest insects, a focus on gender capacity development in Ethiopia and smallholder farmers in Africa adopting practices to improve their field soil health.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
Read more of this post

Update: Plant Health News (16 Jul 14)

wheat leaf showing chlorotic spots symptomatic of boron toxicity © CIMMYT (CC BY-NC-SA)

Wheat leaf showing chlorotic spots symptomatic of boron toxicity © CIMMYT (CC BY-NC-SA)

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including the varying effects of rain on crops in Ivory Coast, the discovery of wheat genes that control boron tolerance and the projects managed by FAO that aim to improve food security in Africa.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
Read more of this post

Update: Plant Health News (04 Jun 14)

Scientists have identified a gene that encodes resistance to Phytophthora capsici, a fungus-like pathogen spreading root rot disease in peppers © Gerald Holmes (CC BY-NC).

Scientists have identified a gene that encodes resistance to the fungus like-pathogen causing root rot disease in peppers © Gerald Holmes (CC BY-NC).

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including the discovery of a microbe that could help control rice blast, concern over the effects of erratic rainfall on crops in Somalia and the discovery of a gene encoding resistance to stem and fruit rot of pepper.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
Read more of this post

National Geographic Hackathon taps into CABI & Plantwise data

Check out this video to hear how CABI contributed to National Geographic’s Future of Food Hackathon in Washington DC last weekend. CABI’s Dr Martin Parr and Dr Timothy Holmes of the Plantwise knowledge bank describe the type of open access data from CABI which was offered to participants of the hackathon, and how these resources for agricultural information are helping to change the story for food security.

Linked Development data contributed to the event:
http://linked-development.org/
And Plantwise knowledge bank data on coffee wilt disease contributed:
http://wp.me/a18V0h-1Ol

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