Africa

Video: How Iron Beans Gained Ground in Rwanda

Mushimiyimana and her family are one of the more than 420,000 farming households in Rwanda who cultivate iron-biofortified bean that were developed by HarvestPlus, the Rwanda Agriculture Board, and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), and first released in the country in 2012. In just a few years since then, iron bean cultivation has expanded rapidly and currently accounts for 20 percent of all beans grown in Rwanda; more than 1.8 million Rwandans, or about 15 percent of the total population, were estimated to be eating these nutritious beans—and the market continues to grow.

Milking opportunity in the foothills of Mount Kenya

When Simon and Sylvia Kiruja started their farm three years ago, they never imagined it would get so big they would need a bigger plot. Their three cows used to bring them 7 litres of milk a day. Today, their 45 cows deliver more than 250 litres daily, contributing around US$1,700 monthly depending on the season, to the Kiruja’s income.

Coupling biophysical modeling results and local farmer preferences to optimize land use in Ethiopia

As Ethiopia approaches 105 million people, the growing demand for food is expanding agriculture into marginal, forest, and natural conservation areas. Human-induced activities include population pressure, agricultural expansion, logging, and development, which have been challenging development and conservation efforts. As cultivation and grazing expand into peripheral and conservation areas, land degradation in the form of deforestation, soil erosion, and nutrient mining as well as conflict between land uses and users accelerate the vulnerability of local farmers to climate change. Despite the environmental, social, and economic benefits of biodiversity and natural ecosystem conservation, the reality is that views that strictly exclude the human element are no longer an option.

CIAT Champion of Open Science: Leroy Mwanzia

Throughout his university studies at Africa Nazarene University, where he studied computer science (B.S. degree), Leroy Mwanzia focused on only one thing: software development. So great was his passion that, after graduating, he turned down a computer networking opportunity at East Africa Breweries Limited and instead opted to become a lecturer at an affiliate training center of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), a job that paid much less. Two years later, he went to a different college to teach the UK-based BTEC Higher National Diploma in Computing.

Bridging the gap between CSA knowledge and action: Unlocking opportunities to the implementation gap

Over the years, Kenya has produced many development policies that have created an enabling environment to address poverty, food security, economic, social, and climate change issues. This puts our country among the top with robust policy and legal instruments that support national growth. In particular, recognizing the importance of climate change, Kenya has developed many policies, plans, and strategies, and ratified international conventions, all in an effort to provide a framework for promoting climate change adaptation and mitigation.

Pan-Africa Bean Research Alliance co-winner of US$1 million Al-Sumait prize

The Pan-Africa Bean Research Alliance (PABRA) was awarded the 2019 edition of the US$1 million Al-Sumait Prize for African Development on November 25. PABRA, which is coordinated by the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), shared the award with the Africa Rice Center, said the Al Sumait Prize Board of Trustees in a statement after choosing the winners.

PABRA received the award “for serving a dynamic network of scientists and practitioners specializing in improving the productivity, processing, and the value chain of beans throughout Africa,” according to the announcement.

CIAT in Africa

CIAT’s vision of the promise of tropical agriculture is especially relevant to sub-Saharan Africa. Nowhere does the well-being of so many people depend so much on a concerted effort to realize farming’s potential for reducing chronic hunger, opening pathways out of rural poverty, enhancing human nutrition, and improving the management of natural resources. CIAT works especially on the following themes:

  • Leveraging markets through improved productivity and competitiveness
  • Agriculture for improved nutrition in Africa
  • Transforming farms and landscapes for sustainability
  • Investment planning for resilient agriculture

 

Contact

Debisi Araba

Debisi Araba

Regional Director

a.araba@cgiar.org

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