Farmers visiting sorghum field. Photo Agathe Diama, ICRISAT

Enhancing awareness on improved sorghum and groundnut technologies in Mali

Farmers from four regions of Mali learnt about groundnut hybridization, sorghum hybrids and multipurpose sweet sorghum, open pollinated varieties of sorghum, varieties resistant to abiotic and biotic stresses with short and medium duration to cope with climate change, hybrid seed production and aflatoxin management during a field day organised by ICRISAT. Farmers visited the exhibition stands and participated in tasting of sweet sorghum syrup and value-added products of groundnut. Their discussions with researchers covered groundnut and sorghum production technologies and…

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Barley is a major crop across the Highlands of Ethiopia, where it is grown by approximately 4.1 million smallholder farmers on close to one million hectares.

Improved malt barley: new income potential for Ethiopian farmers

A new high-yielding, pest-resistant variety of malt barley has the potential to revolutionize Ethiopia’s barley sector, helping to meet growing domestic demand, boost export earnings, and substantially raise farmer incomes. Barley is a major crop across the Highlands of Ethiopia, where it is grown by approximately 4.1 million smallholder farmers on close to one million hectares (ha). The country is one of the major producers of barley in Sub-Saharan Africa, and has a growing malt beverage sector. Yet, despite a…

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Participants at the sorghum innovation platform meeting. Photo: ICRISAT

Connecting farmers with the sorghum value chain in Nigeria

Sorghum farmers in Nigeria and large commercial buyers are coming together for improving the supply of quality seeds to farmers and assuring them a ready market for grains. A ‘Sorghum Innovation Platform’ meeting was held recently so that stakeholders could interact and find common grounds for addressing the challenges hindering growth, as well as discuss measures to close the demand-supply gap. During the event, farmers and other stakeholders who benefitted from seed distributed by the Honeywell Group gave feedback and…

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Participants in the field during the training. Photo: ICRISAT

Capacity building of NARS partners on millets and sorghum

A five-day training workshop for NARS cereal breeding technicians was organized by ICRISAT-Nairobi at their Kiboko field station from 8-12 August. The objective of the workshop was to enhance participants’ knowledge and capacity on theory and practical application of emasculation, pollination, seed production and data collection in sorghum, finger millet and pearl millet for improved management of their breeding programs. The training brought together 12 participants from Kenya (6), Ethiopia (1), Tanzania (4) and Malawi (2). The training was conducted by…

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Women groups exhibiting their products Photo TA Azee, ICRISAT

Building efficient supply chains in Nigeria

Building efficiencies across the supply chain, from input supply to marketing, is key to achieving success. To this end a first of its kind ‘Agricultural Inputs Fair’, was organized in Kano, Nigeria. The aim was to provide farmers with good quality inputs (improved seed varieties, agro chemicals and equipment), at affordable prices from genuine sources, and link them to agricultural extension services. At the fair, nearly 70% (4,500 kg) of assorted improved varieties of seeds brought to the fair by…

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New malt barley varieties perk up farmers and malting industry in Ethiopia

Two new malt barley varieties with the potential to triple average yield in Ethiopia have been released in May 2016 by the Holetta Agricultural Research Center as a result of decades of research collaboration with ICARDA. The two varieties, HB1963 and HB 1964, can yield up to 6 tonnes per hectare (t/ha) as opposed to the average yield of 2 t/ha in Ethiopia. The varieties also offer excellent malting quality, making them attractive buys for the malting and brewery industry,…

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Certified sorghum seeds through Malawi Government’s Farm Input Subsidy Program

Towards diversifying cropping systems in the drought and flood prone areas of Malawi, Pilira 1 variety of sorghum seeds will be distributed to smallholder farmers through the Malawi Government’s Farm Input Subsidy Program. The Pilira 1 is a medium duration variety with a maturity period of 110 to 115 days. It has a yield potential of 2-4 tons per ha. ICRISAT under the framework of Dryland Cereals had recently contributed 1,400 kg of basic seed of Pilira 1 variety of…

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Enhancing sorghum and millet production technologies in Mali

A new project, Africa RISING’s (Africa Research in Sustainable Intensification for the Next Generation) large-scale diffusion of technologies for sorghum and millet system (ARDT_SMS) – that will focus on diffusion of technologies of proven efficacy for enhancing sorghum and pearl millet production systems has been launched in Mali recently. The project supported by USAID Feed the Future (FTF) program is being implemented by ICRISAT as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Cereals. “This project complements and creates synergies…

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Seed Consortium strengthens postrainy sorghum seed value chain in Maharashtra, India

An innovative seed consortium developed by ICRISAT and its partners has started yielding results in strengthening the sorghum seed value chain. For 2014 postrainy season around 300 tons of seed enough for 30,000 ha has been made available as a result of the seed production undertaken in 2013. It is proposed to cover 1,000 ha under seed production during 2014 postrainy season which is more than double the area under seed production in 2013. These results were shared at the…

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More than 42,000 sorghum farmers achieve 39% higher grain yields

The interventions of a private-public partnership backed by science over the last five years, have helped sorghum farmers overcome the challenge of extreme climate variability. Scientists have helped farmers in Maharashtra in India with postrainy sorghum with, in-situ soil moisture conservation, improved cultivars, seed treatment, crop management practices; and input and output market linkages. Building on the strength of this partnership, a ‘seed consortium’ was formed in 2013 by roping in the Maharashtra state seed corporation (Mahabeej) which offered buy-back…

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The CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Cereals (Dryland Cereals) is a partnership between two members of the CGIAR Consortium – ICRISAT (lead center), and ICARDA, along with a number of public and private institutes and organizations, governments, and farmers globally.
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