Beans that Can Beat the Heat

24 March, 2015 by (comments)

Responding to fears that bean production will take a big hit from global warming, CIAT scientists have identified about 30 “elite” lines showing tolerance to temperatures 4 degrees Centigrade above the crop’s normal “comfort zone.” Research on these beans, which is supported by the CGIAR Fund and documented in a recent CGIAR report, represents a major contribution to theRead More …

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Filed Under: Africa @en, Beans @en, Climate Change, Crop diversity, Crops @en, Latin America and the Caribbean

The end of a life dedicated to making bean diversity available for humanity

29 January, 2015 by (comments)

CIAT mourns the loss of research assistant Orlando Toro-Chica, whose death on 22 January has deprived the Center’s Genetic Resources Program of a friend and a highly dedicated professional. He spent 40 years documenting the diversity of Phaseolus beans conserved in the Center’s genebank. An internationally recognized expert on bean genetic resources, Orlando was always willing to dedicate timeRead More …

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Filed Under: Crop diversity, Inside CIAT

Getting ahead of the trends in global diets

28 November, 2014 by (comments)

In agricultural research, time-frames are long and funding often short, so getting the priorities right is crucial. Scientific organizations must be doubly sure they’re focused on tomorrow’s challenges and not yesterday’s, if they expect to remain relevant and effective. This is the spirit in which CIAT’s Decision and Policy Analysis (DAPA) Research Area has prepared a new policy brief examiningRead More …

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Filed Under: Agro-ecology and Economics @en, Climate Change, Crop diversity, Crops @en

An African grass comes home for good – Part 2: Biodiversity to the rescue

23 October, 2014 by (comments)

Of all the efforts now underway to incorporate improved Brachiaria grass into Africa’s mixed farming (see part 1 in this blog series), the biggest and most successful was prompted less by its well-known value as livestock feed and more by another important role for the grass that CIAT scientists never imagined. This and other experiences with Brachiaria are summarizedRead More …

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Filed Under: Africa @en, Crop diversity, Crops @en, Regions, Tropical Forages

An African grass comes home for good – Part 1: Adding value to biodiversity

23 October, 2014 by (comments)

Ask any non-African what they usually associate with this continent – at least when a crisis like the current Ebola outbreak isn’t capturing everyone’s attention – and they’re likely to mention Africa’s spectacular big game. But what if someone were to make the case that a far less charismatic slice of Africa’s biological diversity – particularly an un-photogenic forageRead More …

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Filed Under: Africa @en, Crop diversity, Crops @en, Regions, Tropical Forages

Open data’s contribution to better research for development: The example of RTBMaps

20 October, 2014 by (comments)

RTBMaps is a flagship online atlas developed by the CGIAR Research Program on Roots, Tubers and Bananas (RTB) that provides all sorts of geographic information on RTB crops worldwide for the benefit of the research and development community. RTBMaps aggregates individual maps provided by researchers and scientists around the world through “scientific crowdsourcing”, hence compiling a wealth of criticalRead More …

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Filed Under: Cassava @en, Crop diversity

Visualizing evolving global diets: National Geographic puts CIAT’s data into an interactive graphic

1 September, 2014 by (comments)

Earlier this year, CIAT published a study in PNAS, which addresses the increasing homogeneity of global food supplies and the implications for food security. It revealed that diets worldwide have become more similar by an average of 36% in the last 50 years. According to the study, global food systems rely increasingly on just a few crops – inRead More …

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Filed Under: Agro-ecology and Economics @en, Climate Change, Crop diversity, Crops @en