New study shows that bacteria can be engineered to create their own fertilizer using air

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It is possible that in the future, agricultural crops will be able to produce their own fertilizer (© Pexels)

Researchers have successfully engineered bacteria to use nitrogen at night to create chlorophyll for photosynthesis. This new development could reduce the need for human-made fertilizers on agricultural crops, thus reducing the cost and manpower required for fertilizer application.

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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (07 August 18)

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August pest alerts contain the first report of avocado sunblotch viroid (ASBVd) naturally infecting avocado in Greece (© Pexels)

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 avocado sunblotch viroid (ASBVd) naturally infecting avocado in Greece, the first report of Dasheen mosaic virus infecting taro in Ethiopia and the first record of Cryptochetidae from Turkey.   Continue reading

PRISE: Kenya Stakeholder Workshop July 2018

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PRISE Stakeholder workshop participants, July 2018.

Earlier this month, members of the Pest Risk Information Service (PRISE) consortium held a stakeholder workshop in Kenya to update partners, donors and stakeholders on the progress of the project and to discuss future developments over the next four years.

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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (19 July 18)

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July pest alerts contains a report on Alternaria alternaria, the causal agent of leaf blight on sunflower in South Africa (© Pexels)

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 thrips from India, the description of a new species of PolycestaDejean from Chile and a report on the causal agent of leaf blight on sunflower in South Africa.

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TerraSentia: The Automated Crop Monitoring Robot

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TerraSentia robot to aid crop breeding processes (© The Silicon Review)

A team of researchers from the University of Illinois have developed a completely automated robot capable of monitoring crops in the field during growth periods with the aim of aiding crop breeders in the extensive task of developing and comparing plant cultivars.

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Madagascan bananas may soon be extinct

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Photo: ‘Green Bananas’ by Holger Link on Unsplash

Bananas we buy across the world could be threatened with extinction in the future. This claim is due to the decline of wild banana species which could be the last resort for saving the world’s most popular banana, the Cavendish.

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Environmentally Friendly Insect Repellent for Agriculture

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Naturally biodegradable insect-repelling chemical developed by researchers to target agricultural insect pests (© Pexels)

A team of researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed a biodegradable agent that repels insect pest activity amongst crops without the use of insecticide chemicals.

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