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News Headlines

QUNO Briefs: Food Security Needs Farmers In Global Discussions, Agricultural Biodiversity

The participation of small-scale farmers at the table of international negotiations and the protection of agricultural biodiversity are key to food security, according to the Quaker United Nations Office, which published last month two policy briefs with a list of recommendations.

News Headlines

Food and Conservation Groups Invest in Soil to Sustain Food Production

A national effort to enhance farm sustainability through soil health has additional backing from a major consumer foods manufacturer.

News Headlines

Groundwater overuse rising, could hit food prices

[SYDNEY] The increasing use of groundwater for irrigation poses a major threat to global food security and could lead to unaffordable prices of staple foods.

News Headlines

Microbes, New Weapon Against Agricultural Pests in Africa

BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Apr 10 2017 (IPS) - Microscopic soil organisms could be an environmentally friendly way to control crop pests and diseases and even protect agriculture against the impacts of climate change, a leading researcher says.

News Headlines

Good chocolate equals homes for monkeys

Deforestation to make way for cocoa plantations is having a devastating impact on spider monkeys. But a conservation project in the Ecuadorian rainforest is helping farmers to change their ways.

News Headlines

Ecological focus areas hold potential for helping biodiversity

A report released yesterday by the European Commission shows that ecological focus areas (EFAs) can be helpful in addressing the consequences of certain farming techniques and practices on our environment. This is achieved by bringing potential positive effects for biodiversity, soil, water and ...

News Headlines

The protective powers of chocolate

In Sierra Leone, where communities are recovering from years of hard times, chocolate could just be an essential ingredient in the recipe for a sustainable future. And it could even save local wildlife.

News Headlines

#Hunger4 Bees: Declining Bee Populations Mean and Our Food

Something that affects every single one of us—food—is being used as a way to offer a new perspective on the global problem of falling bee populations. The impact of the decline in pollinating insects on our diets and the tangible, daily consequences for our health, the environment and biodiversi ...

News Headlines

Colombia’s cane industry efficient but potentially damaging

Colombia’s Pacific coast state of Valle del Cauca, home to at least 80 percent of the country’s booming sugar cane industry, continues to rebound after excessive and damaging rains in 2011-2012. In fact, recent USDA Foreign Agricultural Services report found that the country’s cane industry cont ...

News Headlines

The EU must take the lead in linking agricultural trade to the SDGs

Once again trade in agriculture is expected to dominate the agenda and the EU must play a key role.

News Headlines

Nothing fishy about new solution for aquaculture wastewater treatment

Aquaculture, or fish farming, is one of the fastest growing sectors of agriculture in the world today.

News Headlines

Factbox - From new beans to ancient plants, drought-busting crops take root

BOGOTA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - As farmers worldwide experience more frequent drought and erratic rainfall linked to climate change, the race to find and improve drought-resistant crops grows ever more important.

News Headlines

Kenya: Farmers Near Forests Reap Big Gains From Conservation Plan

While many Kenyans are grappling with an acute food insecurity occasioned by the prolonged dry spell, a move by Uasin Gishu County residents to engage in shamba system is paying off with millions of shilling generated from the initiative.

News Headlines

Widely accepted vision for agriculture may be inaccurate, misleading

'Food production must double by 2050 to feed the world's growing population.' This truism has been repeated so often in recent years that it has become widely accepted among academics, policymakers and farmers, but now researchers are challenging this assertion and suggesting a new vision for th ...

News Headlines

Business-as-usual not an option with future global food security in jeopardy, cautions UN agency

22 February 2017 – Warning that diminishing natural resources and a changing climate have put humankind’s future ability to feed itself “in jeopardy,” the United Nations underlined today that while the planet still has the potential to produce enough food, “major transformations” are needed to m ...

News Headlines

Fifth of world's food lost to over-eating and waste, study finds

Almost 20 per cent of the food made available to consumers is lost through over-eating or waste, a study suggests.

News Headlines

Humankind’s Ability to Feed Itself, Now in Jeopardy

ROME, Feb 22 2017 (IPS) - Mankind’s future ability to feed itself is in jeopardy due to intensifying pressures on natural resources, mounting inequality, and the fallout from a changing climate, warns a new United Nations’ report.

News Headlines

The locust invasions devastating Niger

[NIAMEY] It is the end of December 2016, with clear skies over Niger. But as 2017 draws near prospects are grim for some 500 residents in Bani Kosseye, a village 80km from the capital Niamey.

News Headlines

Why are armyworms attacking Africa's crops?

Scientists warn that parts of southern Africa already hit by record droughts now face another potential food crisis because the invasion of a crop-eating pest, known as the "fall armyworm".

News Headlines

Stanford scientists measure African crop yields from space

Feb. 13 (UPI) -- Researchers at Stanford University have developed a new method for accurately measuring crop yields using satellite images. Scientists hope their new strategy will help researchers track agricultural productivity in developing countries where farming data is limited.

News Headlines

How to be a successful pest: Lessons from the green peach aphid

Scientists have discovered why the green peach aphid (Myzus persicae) is one of the most destructive pests to many of our most important crops. Their research will inform industry and research programs to support pest control and aid global food security.

News Headlines

FEATURE-Young Indian farmers spice up market for organic Himalayan crops.

Decades after farmers on India's plains flocked to the "Green Revolution", reliant on chemical fertilisers to drive agricultural growth, the northeast Himalayan state of Sikkim is trying its luck with organic farming – a pull for young, green-minded entrepreneurs who could help get the produce t ...

News Headlines

Genetic study may make ancient Incas quinoa a grain of the future

Quinoa, the sacred "mother grain" of the ancient Inca civilization suppressed by Spanish conquistadors, could become an increasingly important food source in the future thanks to genetic secrets revealed in a new study.

News Headlines

New, Aggressive Rust Imperils Wheat Crops in Europe, Africa, Asia

ROME, Feb 5 2017 (IPS) - Wheat rust, a family of fungal diseases that can cause crop losses of up to 100 per cent in untreated susceptible wheat, is making further advances in Europe, Africa and Asia, according to two new studies produced by scientists in collaboration with the United Nations.

News Headlines

Study: Trees boost African farm income

URBANA, Ill. — Trees may be easy to spot on the plains of Africa, but they often are overlooked as a source of income for farmers. A University of Illinois study shows trees on farms may help reduce rural poverty and maintain biodiversity.

News Headlines

Sustainable agriculture, better-managed water supplies, vital to tackling water-food nexus – UN

25 January 2017 – Highlighting the challenges associated with the inextricable links between water and food – the so-called ‘water-food nexus’ – for food security, as well as for sustainable development, the United Nations agricultural agency today outlined steps that can be taken to improve wat ...

News Headlines

Is warming behind India’s depleting groundwater?

[NEW DELHI] Changing rainfall patterns may be depleting India’s groundwater storage more than withdrawals for agricultural irrigation, says a new study published in January by Nature Geoscience.

News Headlines

Learning Alliances Help Climate-Smart Agricultural Practices Take Root

IBADAN, Nigeria, Jan 24 2017 (IPS) - Development advocates and professionals are very keen on harnessing the power of agriculture to promote the cause of climate change these days

News Headlines

Trees supplement income for rural farmers in Africa

Trees may be easy to spot on the plains of Africa but they are often overlooked as a source of income for farmers.

News Headlines

UN agency eyes recycling wastewater for large-scale farming

19 January 2017 – With agricultural land thirsty and water increasingly scarce, the United Nations agricultural agency is today hosting an international event to discuss the use of municipal liquid waste for farming.

News Headlines

Sweat bees on hot chillies: Native bees thrive in traditional farming, securing good yield

Farming doesn't always have to be harmful to bees: Even though farmers on the Mexican peninsula of Yucatan traditionally slash-and-burn forest to create small fields, this practice can be beneficial to sweat bees by creating attractive habitats.

News Headlines

In Davos, for Africa's farmers

New trends in agriculture threaten to put farmers in developing countries out of work. This is not as bad as it sounds, believes Ishmael Sunga, the chief executive of the SACAU farmers' association.

News Headlines

Cassava could 'transform economies' in Central Africa

[YAOUNDE, CAMEROON] A newly established regional forum on cassava for Central African countries aims to facilitate dialogue to improve how to add value to cassava farming.

News Headlines

Kariba REDD+ project support conservation farming

MASHONALAND WEST, Zimbabwe-A narrow bumpy and dirty road snakes through maize and tobacco fields in a small village in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland West province.

News Headlines

Double fish production while preserving biodiversity—can it be done?

Tanzania, perhaps best known for safaris over its vast open plains, has ambitious plans for diminutive freshwater wildlife with enormous, untapped potential.

News Headlines

Can the 'greening' be greener?

New evidence shows that the 'Ecological Focus Areas' introduced under the EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) greening rules can provide a lot more, for both nature and farmers

News Headlines

‘Safeguarding of biodiversity must be integrated across agric sector’

Governments from 167 countries have given unprecedented recognition to the need to protect biodiversity across agricultural sectors as a key action to achieve sustainable development, including ensuring food security and addressing climate change.

News Headlines

Grasslands hold potential for increased food production

Managing grazing on grasslands in a more efficient way could significantly increase global milk and meat production or free up land for other uses.

News Headlines

Modern agriculture cultivates climate change – we must nurture biodiversity

Crop-breeding innovations are merely a short-term solution for falling yields. Only agricultural diversity can ensure food security and resilience

News Headlines

Safeguarding Biodiversity Must be Integrated Across Agricultural Sectors

GLOBAL - Governments from 167 countries have given unprecedented recognition to the need to protect biodiversity across the agricultural sectors as a key action to achieve sustainable development, including ensuring food security and addressing climate change.

News Headlines

Real Farming Report - Whose seeds are they anyway?

For at least 12,000 years, humans have been sowing, selecting, domesticating and freely exchanging seeds in order to adapt to the conditions of an ever-changing Earth. Then, a century or so ago, things went pear-shaped.

News Headlines

Are 'open source' seeds necessary for a resilient food system?

Frank Morton has been breeding lettuce since the 1980s. His company offers 114 varieties, among them Outredgeous, which last year became the first plant that NASA astronauts grew and ate in space.

News Headlines

Climate-Resistant Beans Could Save Millions

CALI, Colombia, Dec 6 2016 (IPS) - A global food watchdog works around the clock to preserve crop biodiversity, with a seed bank deep in the Colombian countryside holding the largest collection of beans and cassava in the world and storing crops that could avert devastating problems.

News Headlines

'We urgently need healthy soils to ensure essential services they provide,' Ban says on World Soil Day

Marking World Soil Day, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stressed the importance of healthy soils, adding that “sustainable management systems and practices will unlock the full potential of soils to support food production, store and supply clean water, preserve biodiversity, se ...

News Headlines

Mainstreaming biodiversity to guarantee food security and nutrition

Maintaining biological diversity is important for producing food and to conserve the very foundation of life and rural livelihoods, FAO Deputy Director-General Maria Helena Semedo told participants in an international summit aimed at protecting biodiversity.

News Headlines

Transforming rural areas through agriculture

Rural areas in Sarawak stands to gain from agriculture development due to its huge amount of land which is rich in bio-resources.

News Headlines

Nicaragua’s ‘Dry Corridor’ to benefit from UN-backed sustainable agriculture project

29 November 2016 – About 30,000 families in 58 municipalities in Nicaragua’s ‘Dry Corridor,’ the area of the country most affected by droughts and climate change, are expected to benefit from a financial agreement between the United Nations International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) ...

News Headlines

Feed the world and save the environment

A James Cook University scientist has come up with a novel approach to feed the world’s growing population and look after the environment at the same time.

News Headlines

Thanksgiving 2050: To feed the world we have to stop destroying our soil

At the height of the slave trade in 1785, an English divinity student, Thomas Clarkson, won a Latin essay contest considering the question, “Is it lawful to enslave the un-consenting?”

News Headlines

Glow-in-the-dark geckos' help in quest to preserve farmland biodiversity, study finds

By dipping marbled geckos in a harmless fluorescent powder during the day and releasing them in a variety of farm environments, including pastures and crops, Australian National University (ANU) researcher Geoffrey Kay has been able to track the animals' movements.

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