Posts Tagged ‘Africa’

Could conservation agriculture help mitigate climate change?

Double maize yields for Malawian farmer with conservation agricultureIn the densely populated areas of South Asia on the Indo-Gangetic plains (IGP) and Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), climate change threatens to pose an enormous risk to food security. By the year 2050 both regions are expected to suffer crop yield decreases of at least 20%, with a 40% chance of crop failure for maize in a given season in much of Southern Africa, making a sustainable increase of food production critical in the near future.

Of maize farmers, coming calves, waxing oxen, and comely camels: a Tanzanian tale of triumph over tribulations

Valeria and her daughters and part of their bountiful maize harvest from ‘ngamia’ seed. B. Wawa/CIMMYT’

Valeria and her daughters and part of their bountiful maize harvest from ‘ngamia’ seed. B. Wawa/CIMMYT’

By Brenda Wawa

About her last maize harvest in August 2015, Valeria Pantaleo, a 47-year-old wife and mother of four from Olkalili village, northern Tanzania, waxes lyrical: “I finally managed to buy a calf to replace my two oxen that died at the beginning of the year due to a strange disease.” Valeria relies on the oxen to plow her two-acre land.

Farmers’ Critical Role in Fight to Prevent Spread of MLN

Examining for MLNIn the fight to prevent and control the spread of maize lethal necrosis (MLN) across Eastern Africa, the support and cooperation of everyone involved in maize production is crucial—especially farmers. This was the main focus of CIMMYT’s 4th stakeholders meeting, held 15 October in Kenya, which brought together 56 local farmers as well as community leaders, administrators, government extension officers, KALRO and CIMMYT staff. The meeting was held to share new information on MLN and agree on the best methods to control the incidence and spread of the disease.

Maize Lethal Necrosis: Building a comprehensive response

In September 2011, reports came of a devastating new maize disease in the Southern Rift Valley of Kenya. The symptoms were described as mottling of the leaves, small cobs with few grains, and necrosis of young leaves leading to “dead heart” and eventually plant death. It was common for affected fields to show 100 percent infection rates, meaning that some farmers faced losing the entire crop.

MLN is a disease caused by a combination of maize chlorotic mottle virus, and any other potyvirusBy October 2012, a study team sent by CIMMYT and the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) confirmed the disease to be maize lethal necrosis (MLN).