Researchers at several institutions are searching for microbial solutions for Africa’s low-performing staple crops.
Microbial-based solutions are perhaps the best-kept secret in agricultural innovation.
Africa has the potential to take the lead in the drive to achieve sustainable agriculture.
Sustainable agriculture in Africa has the ability to act as an example for other regions worldwide. But to do this the approaches and technology taken must be interdisciplinary.
Some farmers are suspicious of technological innovation. But technology can really help them.
It's been proved that prizes can boost cultural innovation. The same is certainly true for innovation in agriculture – which Africa desperately needs.
A woman harvests roses in a greenhouse at a flower farm outside Addis Ababa. Floriculture has boomed in Ethiopia.
Considering all the positive signs Ethiopia might very well be on its way to become Africa's industrial powerhouse.
Food security efforts need to look beyond urban agriculture.
It's important to question whether the promotion of urban agriculture can actually help people, or whether other solutions should be explored.
Nitrogen is one of the most important nutrients for soils and Africa doesn’t have enough.
Nitrogen inputs in African soil must be carefully used. If they're not, there will be unintended consequences for the environment and human health.
Cattle drink water from an almost dry dam in South Africa. The drought in the region is one of a number of troubling issues that remain largely hidden from public sight.
One of the many intriguing ideas of the Austrian philosopher, Ludwig Wittgenstein, was this: the limits of my language means the limits of my world. Does this explain the failure to see the gathering gloom…
Proper management of Africa’s savanna regions is crucial for the continent’s climate and food security future.
Africa's savannas provide high potential for farming development but this needs to be done in a smart manner to not worsen climate change.
Community education is a vital part of the Malawi Farmer to Farmer Agroecology project.
Carmen Bezner Kerr
Agroecological techniques that mimic nature – the antithesis of GMOs and high-cost fertilizers – have made farmers in developing countries more resilient to extreme weather.
The Sahel, the transition zone between the arid north of Africa and tropic south, has highly variable rainfall.
Center for International Forestry Research.
Field trials in Senegal show native shrubs can access deep-soil water and make it available to adjacent crops – a technique that could alleviate drought conditions in marginal lands around the world.
An Ethiopian girl sells barley seeds in northern Tigray. The sub-Saharan Africa seed industry remains largely informal.
The seed industry in sub-Saharan Africa suffers from many challenges. India, which has one of the biggest seed markets in the world, offers some lessons on how these challenges could be overcome.
Can science help the developing world stave off a food crisis?
The challenges of feeding a hungry planet are many. Gene editing crops to be more productive, nutritious or hardy could help, but concerns about GMOs abound.
Modern cattle in Kenya.
Steven Goldstein, Washington University St. Louis
New research upends the previous theory that tsetse flies – and the disease they carry – were the main reason the spread of livestock domestication in Africa stalled out for a thousand years.
Put innovative farming techniques in the right hands.
Africa will be able to feed itself in the next 15 years. That’s one of the big “bets on the future” that Bill and Melinda Gates have made in their foundation’s latest annual letter. Helped by other breakthroughs…