Global experts and stakeholders meet to develop fall armyworm emergency plan and management strategy for Africa

NAIROBI, Kenya – Smallholder farmers in eastern, southern and western Africa are facing a major threat to their crops from the fall armyworm, which has so far damaged almost 300,000 hectares of maize.

To address this rapidly unfolding emergency, about 130 experts and stakeholders from African governments, international and national agricultural research organizations, non-governmental organizations, national plant protection organizations, development partners, and donor agencies will meet on April 27 and 28, 2017 in Nairobi to discuss and develop an effective management strategy against the fall armyworm pest in Africa.

Delegates will discuss the present status of the fall armyworm in various sub-regions in Africa, how smallholder farmers are presently managing this invasive pest, and the best possible short, medium and long term solutions to fight the pest. Many countries are currently keeping it in check through costly pesticides, which could be potentially reduced through an integrated pest management (IPM) strategy.

The stakeholder consultation meeting will be co-organized by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, in partnership with the government of Kenya.

KEY SPEAKERS DURING THE INAUGURAL SESSION:

Inaugural session and press briefing April 27 from 08:00 – 11:00 am local time (05:00 – 08:00 GMT)

  • Richard Lesiyampe, Principal Secretary, State Department of Agriculture, Government of Kenya
  • B.M. Prasanna, Director, CGIAR Research Program MAIZE & Global Maize Program, CIMMYT
  • Joe DeVries, Vice President, Programme Development and Innovation, AGRA
  • Lewis Hove, Head of the Resilience and Emergency office for Southern Africa, FAO
  • Candace Buzzard, Deputy Mission Director, USAID Kenya and East Africa

The two-day symposium is open to all news media

WHEN: Thursday, April 27 and Friday, 28, 2017

WHERE: Villa Rosa Kempinski Hotel, Nairobi

Members of the press: please note scientists and delegates are available for remote interviews.

For more information and to confirm participation, please contact:

CIMMYT:

Brenda Wawa at b.wawa@cgiar.org or +254 721 614 771. Twitter @bwawa_b. Skype: brenda.wawa1

Julie Mollins at j.mollins@cgiar.org Twitter: @jmollins, Skype: juliemollins 

AGRA:

Waiganjo Njoroge at wnjoroge@agra.org or +254 723 857 270.Twitter: @waijungle. Skype: waiganjo.njoroge

FAO:

Rachel Nandelenga at Rachel.Nandelenga@fao.org or +27 730511812. Twitter: RNandelenga. Skype: Rachel.Nandelenga

 

BACKGROUND STORIES:

Scientists tackle deadly fall armyworm devastating maize in Africa

Fall armyworm outbreak a blow to prospects for recovery for southern Africa

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