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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Newly developed high biomass sorghum. Photo: B Veera Shetty, ICRISAT

Newly developed high biomass sorghum and pearl millet a boon to 2G biofuel production in India

The advantages of newly developed high biomass sorghum and pearl millet developed by ICRISAT and Indian Institute of Millets Research (IIMR) for use as feedstock in second generation or lignocellulosic (2G) biofuel production in India was highlighted at a recent workshop. India is a signatory to the UN Climate Change Paris Agreement (COP21) and biofuel production is one of the thrust areas identified to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The country’s ethanol production is mainly from sugarcane molasses. However, considering severe…

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Ms Haerns and Dr Chaponda at the launch of MSIDP II project.

Boost for Malawi farmers from improved seed systems and root and tuber crops technologies

About 320,000 smallholder farmers in Malawi will benefit from two projects that aim to further strengthen the country’s legumes and cereal seed systems as well as increase contributions of root and tuber crops to food security, nutrition and incomes. Two Irish Aid funded projects, Malawi Seed Industry Development Project-Phase II (MSIDPII) and Root and Tuber Crops for Agricultural Transformation in Malawi (RTC-ACTION Malawi) were launched on 26 September. ICRISAT leads the MSIDPII while RTC-ACTION Malawi is led by the International…

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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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Dr Maureen Cheserek, Nutritionist, Egerton University, addressing mothers at Elgeyo Marakwet. Photo: ICRISAT

Smart Food nutrition activities kick off in Kenya

To improve the nutritional status of women in the reproductive age and children below five years, an awareness drive under the Smart Food campaign has been launched in selected counties in Kenya. The aim is to promote increased consumption of nutrient dense, drought tolerant crops (sorghum, millets, pigeonpea, groundnut, cowpea and green gram) and appropriate dietary practices in the project areas using social behavior change communication approaches. The Smart Food team in Kenya will support the initiative, by disseminating nutrition…

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Women farmer with sweet sorghum, India

Sweet sorghum complementing ethanol production in sugar mills

To help the government achieve the national ethanol blending targets of 20% by 2017, private sugar mills and the public sector research institutes are collaborating with ICRISAT to identify and test sweet sorghum varieties suitable for ethanol production. Under the framework of CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Cereals, a total of seven sugar mills are associated with ICRISAT in this 3-year project. At the first Annual Review cum Work Planning meeting many sweet sorghum hybrids were identified as suitable for…

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Delivering nutritious and high yielding cereals in western Africa

A recent review and planning meeting showed that partners were on track towards achieving the project goals and delivery of nutritious and high yielding sorghum and pearl millet hybrids to the smallholder farmers in western Africa. The overall goal of the project is to enhance sorghum and pearl millet productivity in West and Central Africa through cultivation of nutritious hybrids, contributing to food security, income generation, and improved nutrition. To achieve this goal, scientists are collaborating to define functional heterotic…

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svcdc discussion-dc

Strengthening value chain for drought tolerant crops in Kenya

The need for effective branding and marketing of drought tolerant crops is critical in order to change consumer perceptions and attitudes was highlighted at a roundtable discussion on issues affecting marketing and value addition of drought tolerant crops. Dr Moses Siambi, Director – Eastern & Southern Africa, ICRISAT-Kenya, during his presentation on the ICRISAT Smart Food campaign said, “Drought tolerant crops including sorghum, millets, pigeonpea and groundnut are smart crops because of the high nutritional value, high resilience under extreme…

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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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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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