How can tomato farming be improved in Kenya? Study finds producers face a ‘myriad of constraints’

Extension worker speaks with Masai men about their crops
In a recently published paper in Scientific African, CABI’s Willis Ochilo led on a study which captured a better understanding of tomato producers in Kenya, describing in detail the production practices in order to identify challenges and opportunities for increasing tomato productivity for the country’s smallholder communities. Tomato is a good source of vitamins A…
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CABI-led £1.6 million collaboration helps reduce China’s reliance on harmful pesticides

Close up of a locust on a white background
A CABI-led project involving an international team of remote sensing and plant protection experts is helping China reduce its reliance on harmful pesticides to fight crop pests and diseases including yellow rust fungal disease of wheat and locusts. The £1.6 million STFC Newton Agri-Tech Fund-financed project is leaving a lasting legacy in helping the Chinese Government…
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Unregistered herbicides use rampant among smallholders

By Alex Abutu. Reblogged from SciDev.Net. African rice smallholders are increasingly using low-quality, unregistered herbicides because of inadequate capacity of governments to enforce strict monitoring of national pesticides regulations, a study says.
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Using rice to filter pesticide runoff

Rice has been a staple food crop for millions of people for hundreds of years. This important crop is now a major part of 20% of the world’s population, with it being grown on every continent except Antarctica.Whilst rice is known to be an important part of our diet, recently published research has shown how…
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“Our crops have answers”

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Kanyumbu village is a compact rural farming village in Lilongwe district in Malawi. Farmers in this village mostly produce maize, beans, and mangoes from a few trees scattered in their fields. In 2013, they received a new service from the Department of Agriculture; a plant clinic, with a plant doctor. They were informed that they…
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New coalition puts knowledge and skills into the hands of those who need it

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CABI has joined forces with the ISEAL Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Coalition in the fight to implement better, less chemical-dependent, ways for farmers to manage agricultural pests and diseases that account for around 40% of lost crops worldwide. By linking with the Plantwise Knowledge Bank, the coalition aims to share knowledge on sustainable pest management…
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Can farms maintain productivity while reducing pesticide use?

A new UN report states that it is dangerously misleading to suggest that pesticides are necessary to achieve food security. Instead, the report recommends that farms reduce pesticide use and adopt sustainable practices that protect crops from pests by enhancing biodiversity and natural enemies. This agroecological approach eliminates reliance on, and exposure to, expensive and toxic…
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New guidelines for addressing highly hazardous pesticides

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Written by Melanie Bateman, CABI There are many different ways in which pesticides can potentially cause harm to human health or to the environment. For example, substances which are acutely toxic can knock someone down rather rapidly, with symptoms felt within a short space of time. Chronic toxicity, on the other hand, can lead to…
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Farmer Health: A Case Against Pesticides

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Guest blog by Julie Potyraj; read her previous post on community health here For most of us, the point of choosing sustainably grown foods is to protect our own health and to minimize environmental damage. While these are important reasons for making better choices at the grocery store, what about the human side and the health of those…
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Using the crop clinic concept to minimize the indiscriminate use of pesticides

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A recent article in the Sri Lanka Plant Protection Industry Journal highlights how the crop clinic concept in Sri Lanka has promoted effective, judicious use of pesticides. PT Bandara and WMDH Kulatunga describe how the Permanent Crop Clinic Programme (PCCP), established in 2009, provides effective advice that both prevents the destruction of natural enemies due…
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