Space-age technology for fight against crop-devastating pest outbreaks in Kenya

Alex Whitebrook/ July 18, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

CABI is leading a consortium, funded by the UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Programme (IPP), developing a Pest Risk Information Service (PRISE), which uses state-of-the-art technology to help inform farmers in sub-Saharan Africa of pest outbreaks that could devastate their crops and livelihoods. The service was launched at a Plantwise plant clinic in Manyatta in Kenya’s Eastern Province. Plant clinics

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Drone monitors crops at Capetown, reduces chemical usage

Alex Whitebrook/ July 17, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

The agriculture industry has increasingly gravitated toward unmanned aerial systems (UAS) in recent years, as drones and sophisticated imaging software can affordably provide farmers with the data they need to maximize crop yields and reduce costs wherever possible. According to Cape Business News, as the owner of Rosenhof Organic Farm near Cape Town in South Africa, Jean Kuiper’s decision to use drone technology

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Farm to Fork Debuts First Crop of Ag-Tech Startups

Alex Whitebrook/ July 17, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Techstars Farm to Fork, the Twin Cities newest accelerator, announced the inaugural crop of nine startups in its agriculture-technology program today. Farm to Fork startups are developing digital products for the food and agriculture markets. The companies in this first accelerator are working to solve problems such as food safety, supply chain management and restaurant efficiency. Ecolab and Minnetonka-based agribusiness giant Cargill announced late

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Across China: Tech-loaded greenhouses in Gobi boost profit for farmers

Alex Whitebrook/ July 16, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Growing crops had never been a profitable business for the farmers of Shahe village, in the waterless and desolated Gobi desert of northwest China’s Gansu Province. “The land was so barren that most villagers had no choice but to leave their hometown to make a living,” recalled Fan Lide, a villager of Shahe who has worked as a plumber, mechanic,

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Texas A&M scientists doing research on cotton, weeds

Alex Whitebrook/ July 12, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Scientists at Texas A&M University are hopeful they’ve developed the kryptonite for what’s been a losing battle against herbicide-resistant weeds now choking cotton fields across the southern U.S. The San Antonio Express-News reports if it works as well in the San Angelo test field as it has in a campus greenhouse, the technology could prove revolutionary to a crop that

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Finalists Named for AgTech Conference of the South Pitch Off Competition

Alex Whitebrook/ July 12, 2018/ Press Releases/ 0 comments

The AgTech Conference of the South, a premiere conference dedicated to the innovation, entrepreneurship and investment that is shaping the future of agriculture, announces the finalists for its Pitch Off competition. Fourteen startups were named, with the top four earning a spot to present to a panel of judges from leading companies such as Climate Corp., Cox Enterprises Clean Tech division and

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Kenyan Farmer: On Cusp of a Biotech Revolution

Alex Whitebrook/ July 11, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Farmers have good years and bad years. Here in Kenya, however, the good years never seemed quite as good as they could have been and the bad years have felt worse than necessary. Why? It’s because we can’t take advantage of tools that farmers in much of the developed world take for granted: genetically engineered crops, often referred to as

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A UK farmer’s perspective: What are the consequences when biotechnology innovations are withheld?

Alex Whitebrook/ July 10, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

How much would your life change if the government suddenly were to ban mobile phones? It would alter everything, mostly for the worse, from how you work to how you communicate with your family. In time, perhaps, you’d get used to it: Our parents managed to survive without these devices for most of their lives. I anticipate we’d figure out

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Space-age crop breeding innovation at The University of Queensland

Alex Whitebrook/ July 9, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Since humanity’s first venture into space in the early 20th century, space experiments have inspired some incredible technologies, including solar cells, enriched baby food, artificial limbs and invisible braces, just to name a few. NASA’s experiments that seek to grow wheat in space have inspired University of Queensland (UQ) scientists to develop the world’s first ‘speed breeding’ procedures here, on planet Earth. Queensland

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Life after CRP: Returning land to crops

Alex Whitebrook/ July 9, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

David Burkland walks through a field of knee-high corn on a late-June morning and studies it with experienced eyes. Its condition isn’t ideal, but he’s mostly satisfied — especially since the field was covered with grass and in the Conservation Reserve Program a year ago. “This isn’t going to be any kind of bumper crop,” the veteran Grand Forks, N.D.,

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