AAAE News Brief

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July 22, 2020
The true story of Akinwumi Adesina, President of African Development Bank

Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, a distinguished Nigerian, an outstanding public servant, an eternal optimist and a first class farmer (with a bow tie). Dr. Adesina for short is brilliant, very smart, charismatic, speaks in quotable sound bites and loaded with international and government experience. He can hold a room, with style and a smile, sporting a trademark bow tie and quip for all occasions. Whenever he discusses the implementation of his projects at Africa Development Bank or discusses Africa, he’s always doing it with passion. WATCH

source: NAB TV
African Scientists Directory launched

To help create a vibrant and well-connected African science community, the ISC Regional Office for Africa has launched the African Scientists Directory in partnership with the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf). The searchable online directory aims to support connectivity and collaboration between scientists across Africa. READ MORE

Farmer cooperatives across West and Central Africa help expand access to improved seeds, boosting yields

A farmers’ cooperative in Mali has experienced a significant increase in production of quality seeds, setting an example for other farmer organizations in Mali and neighboring countries. They are using both rainy season and dry season varieties to enhance their yields remarkably increasing resilience and farm incomes. READ MORE

source: ICRISAT
The hybrid alternative for Africa

Africa, which has tremendous agricultural potential, is often described as a continent of paradoxes. Rice statistics reveal one such paradox. The continent’s average rice yields, estimated at about 2 tons per hectare (ha), are among the lowest in the world. Yet, Egypt, in northern Africa, has one of the highest national average rice yields worldwide, with nearly 10 tons per ha. READ MORE

source: AfricaRice
AGRA Policy Brief: “Building Resilient Agriculture Systems”

AGRA is pleased to release the Policy Brief: “Building Resilient Agriculture Systems”. It asks the question “Are agriculture systems well prepared to withstand high impact shocks such as the COVID-19 pandemic, and, faced with such shocks, are they resilient?”. The Policy Brief provides short term and long term recommendations to governments to support resilient agriculture systems within the COVID-19 pandemic. READ MORE

source: AGRA
Science-based policies can unlock Africa’s access to genome-edited crop varieties

CGIAR-IITA head of plant biotechnology Leena Tripathi has made an impassioned plea for genome editing and its potential. She made the call in a recently published paper titled, CRISPR/Cas9-based genome editing of banana for disease resistance. Tripathi and her Kenya-based team are using gene editing to develop disease-resistant banana varieties. READ MORE

source: IITA
Partnerships for solutions: Assessing COVID’s Impacts on Poor Urban Consumers in Africa

Alliance researchers in Nairobi, Kenya, report on a joint study establishing the effects of COVID-19 on residents’ livelihoods and food access. With COVID-19 disrupting food systems worldwide, the negative implications for food and nutrition security are rising daily. Vulnerable poor in urban areas are likely to feel more severe impacts, especially the over half of Africa’s urban population living in slums. However little work has yet do be conducted on the pandemic’s influence on consumption behavior, diets and food security. READ MORE

Small is beautiful: 7 ways to make small-scale mechanization work for African farmers

Can Africa’s smallholder farmers adopt and reap the benefits of farm mechanization? The Farm Mechanization and Conservation Agriculture for Sustainable Intensification (FACASI) team set out in 2013 to test this proposition. With the project nearing closure, the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) project leader Frédéric Baudron believes the answer is yes. READ MORE

source: CIMMYT
Multiple shocks are disrupting agricultural farming systems in sub Saharan Africa

AGRA’s June Food Security Monitor finds multiple shocks are disrupting agricultural farming systems in sub Saharan Africa. Findings from the June Food Security Monitor include: The multiple shocks in many parts of the continent are causing severe disruptions to agricultural farming systems with devastating impacts on affected populations; The continued food price spikes in some parts of the continent demonstrate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and containment measures on food and nutrition security in Africa; The continued disruption of food distribution and trade activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need for countries to reduce their import dependency and increase domestic food production to ensure self-sufficiency. READ MORE

source: AGRA
Amid biting drought, nuns in Zambia fend off hunger with organic farming

Under the scorching sun on the outskirts of this town located 15 miles south of the capital, Lusaka, a group of religious sisters has slowly been practicing organic farming amid a biting drought that has affected millions of residents and their livestock countrywide. The Daughters of the Redeemer are determined to find solutions to severe drought that has affected the southern African nation over the past few years, resulting in crops failing and livestock losing their grazing grounds. READ MORE

The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) is recruiting two economic modelers to further develop the global partial equilibrium land use model GLOBIOM on global and regional studies. The job descriptions are available below.
Obituary: Prof. Peter Adebola OKUNEYE
The death has occurred of Prof. Peter Adebola OKUNEYE, a Fellow and former President of the Nigerian Association of Agricultural Economists (NAAE) between 2011 and 2017. The untimely death occurred on Monday 8th June, 2020 at the age of 68 years. Prof. Okuneye was born on the 23rd day of December, 1952 in Ijebu-Igbo, Ogun State. He was a world renowned and erudite scholar in Agricultural and Environmental Economics who blends theory with practical issues in examining and solving problems of social, economic and environmental dimensions. More
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