GM crops are key to improving ag production in Africa, the Economist reports
According to an Economist Special Report this week, biotechnology has helped African countries to significantly improve crop yields and overcome environmental challenges.
Joe deVries, head of crop research at the Alliance for a Green Revolution (AGRA) says that previously African farmers had low yields for crops such as sorghum and cassava, but the adoption of biotech sorghum has tripled yields and genetic research helps prevent the devastation of cassava from disease. Read more.
Harvard Professor recommends GM crops as solution to low food production in Africa
In Harvard Magazine, Professor Calestous Juma at the Harvard Kennedy School says that agricultural technology could help Africa improve its food production. Professor Juma is founder of the African Centre for Technology Studies, the first African NGO dedicated to promoting science and technology methods for sustainable development, and he currently directs the Agricultural Innovation Project at Harvard, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. His book, The New Harvest, “notes that the use of genetically modified BT corn and cotton has reduced pesticide use and increased crop yields in Burkina Faso, South Africa, and Egypt.” Read more.
March 17: film about founder of first seed company to be screened at the National Portrait Gallery
On Thursday, March 17, at 12 PM EST the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. will premiere the film Henry Wallace: An Uncommon Man. The film presents a biographical portrait of the Iowa farmer, scientist and writer who founded the world’s first hybrid seed company that catalyzed the Green Revolution of the 20th century, which has helped save more than a billion people in Latin America and Asia through improved plant varieties. Mr. Wallace served as Agriculture Secretary and Vice President under Franklin Delano Roosevelt during the Great Depression and World War II. Read more.
Submit nominations for the 2012 World Food Prize
The World Food Prize is accepting nominations for its annual award to honor individuals who have contributed to “improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.” Norman Borlaug, a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate who has also been called the “Father of the Green Revolution,” founded The World Food Prize twenty-five years ago to continue his legacy of implementing agricultural technologies that help fight global hunger. The deadline for submitting nominations for 2012 is April 1, 2011. Read more.