IITA News

IITA to lead One-Health in Ghana-Benin under AICCRA Project

IITA to lead One-Health in Ghana-Benin under AICCRA Project

In a bid to help African countries strengthen the resilience of their agricultural sector against the threat posed by climate change, a $60 million grant has been awarded for the ‘Accelerating the Impact of CGIAR Climate Research for Africa’ (AICCRA) project. The project will concentrate its activities in six countries: Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Senegal,…

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Scientists discuss better ways to protect plant health

Every year, the Germplasm Health Units (GHUs) of the CGIAR Centers organize the “Phytosanitary Awareness Week”. This year, the event was themed, “Phytosanitary safety for the prevention of the transboundary spread of pests and pathogens,” and took place from 9 to 13 November to highlight the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH 2020). The CGIAR Centers set up the…

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Do not forget Plant Health in the One Health approach says IITA scientist

The One Health approach, which looks at the interconnectedness between human, animal, and environmental health, should also emphasize plant health, says IITA’s plant health pathologist for the Eastern Africa hub, George Mahuku. Speaking at a seminar at IITA-Tanzania on 3 November, Mahuku said, “There is an urgent need to recognize the interconnection between plant health…

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IITA trains partners on ODK tools for surveillance of new banana disease threat, Fusarium wilt (Foc TR4)

IITA trains partners on ODK tools for surveillance of new banana disease threat, Fusarium wilt (Foc TR4)

IITA recently conducted a two-day training for national partners from the agriculture plant health services and plant protection departments in Tanzania and Vietnam. The workshop focused on using the Open Data Kit (ODK) tool to facilitate real-time surveillance of invasive pests and diseases in the banana cropping system, including the recent soil-borne fungal disease threat,…

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Fall armyworm destroys maize.

Harnessing insect biodiversity for sustainable plant health in tropical Africa

Fall armyworm (FAW), a ravaging pest of the maize plant, is spreading globally. Every year, Africa, Asia, and the Near East lose 80 million tons of maize worth US$18 billion to the damaging effects of FAW. Georg Goergen, IITA Entomologist and Biocontrol Specialist based in Cotonou, highlighted past and ongoing efforts to control the spread…

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

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. “To boost the use of…

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Repacking Aflasafe at the new plant.

Production and distribution of Aflasafe KE01TM continue despite COVID-19 restrictions

As Kenya puts in place measures to protect the lives of its citizens from the devastating coronavirus disease, COVID-19, efforts to also protect lives by ensuring food is safe and free from the devastating aflatoxin have been going on. The team from the Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and the International Institute of…

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Nodumax production team before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nodumax set for full production despite the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting global food systems, disrupting regional agricultural value chains, and posing risks to household food security. It has created a heightened awareness of food safety among producers, businesses, governments, and consumers. The agricultural input production and supply industry is facing many challenges around production and logistics. This affected the unit at…

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Meet CGIAR-IITA’s women fighting plant pests and diseases

Meet CGIAR-IITA’s women fighting plant pests and diseases

The current COVID-19 pandemic is a heart-wrenching example of how viruses can quickly spread from one continent to the next. The way human diseases spread is not any different from how plant pests and diseases spread. Lava Kumar, a virologist and head of the Germplasm Health Unit (GHU) at IITA, says, “Humans are the number…

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Publication showcases 50 years of IITA’s plant health research

The United Nations General Assembly has declared 2020 as the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH), with the objective to raise global awareness on how protecting plant health can help end hunger, reduce poverty, protect the environment, and boost economic development. IITA joins the rest of the world in commemorating this. In 2019, a new…

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