First conference of new global research alliance to establish practical field solutions against Fall Armyworm

Time to scale up fight against the voracious pest

Despite significant efforts to control the spread of the invasive Fall Armyworm, first detected in Africa in 2016, the pest keeps advancing to new areas in sub-Saharan Africa and beyond.

The effects of its insatiable appetite continue to be felt across the continent as it feeds on many crops in addition to maize, with for instance an increasingly growing appetite for sorghum and millet. Without appropriate action, the Fall Armyworm threatens to cause billions of dollars in annual damage to African food staples.

As part of a global effort to roll out a sustainable integrated Fall Armyworm management program adapted to the African context, 35 organizations have united their efforts in a global coalition of research for development partners. The new consortium focuses on developing a shared vision of how farmers should fight against this pest.

The international consortium members will hold their first face-to-face meeting on October 29-31, 2018, at the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The African Union Commission (AUC), AGRA, CABI, CIMMYT, FAO, icipe, IITA and USAID are organizing this international conference.

The keynote speakers who will address the opening of the conference (October 29, 2018, 8:00–10:30 a.m.) are:

  • H.E. Mr. Oumer Hussen, Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of Ethiopia
  • Dr. Godfrey Bahiigwa, Director of Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission

Other high-level panelists include:

  • Dr. Eyasu Abraha, Hon State Minister for Agriculture Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, Ethiopia
  • Dr. Martin Kropff, Director General, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT)
  • Diana Akullo, Policy Officer, African Union Commission.
  • Hans Dreyer, Director of FAO’s Plant Production and Protection Division
  • Regina Eddy, Coordinator, USAID Fall Armyworm Task Force.

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