December 30, 2016

Innovation of the Week: Tobacco as an Organic Pesticide

Health concerns over tobacco use have hurt tobacco farmers—the number of farms growing tobacco in the United States dropped from 512,000 in 1954 to 56,977 in 2002. But the poisonous quality of tobacco could help farmers enter the pesticide market.

Innovation of the Week: From the Township Garden to the City Table

Around 1 million people in South Africa—the majority of whom are recent arrivals from the former apartheid homelands, Transkei and Ciskei— live in the shacks that make up Khayelitsha, Nyanga and the area surrounding the Cape Flats outside Cape Town.  Just under half, or 40 percent, of the population is unemployed, while the rest barely […]

Innovation of the Week: Water Out of Thin Air

In many parts of sub-Saharan Africa, people are forced to travel long distances and spend hours at a time collecting the water needed for cooking and drinking from far away streams or wells. But the residents of Cabazane, South Africa have found a much less labor intensive alternative. They use gravity and let water come […]

Innovation of the Week: Staying Tuned for More Innovations

Listen to Radio Fanaka Fana and Radio Jigiya, in the Fana and Zégoua regions of Mali, and you are much more likely to hear tips for improving compost piles and soil quality than you are pop music hits or current events. That’s because the station is participating in Farm Radio International’s Africa Farm Radio Research […]

Innovation of the Week: Funding a Blue Revolution

As climate change worsens, and fresh water availability grows more erratic, the food security of small-scale farmers throughout Africa will increasingly depend on their water management abilities. Luckily, the tools for improving water management already exist.

Innovation of the Week: Turning Agriculture into Gold

Before Kenya’s independence, the Migori District’s economy was driven by the Macalder Mining Company, the area’s largest employer. When the company shut down in 1966, it left behind a lot of abandoned land—and a lot of unemployed miners.

Fearing the Food We Love

Last year thousands of food products containing peanut butter produced by one company, the Peanut Corporation of America, were pulled from store shelves due to salmonella contamination. The company was responsible for supplying over 200 companies with peanut butter for these food products, many of which were ultimately marketed to children. Suddenly our favorite snacks—from […]

Innovation of the Week: Handling Pests with Care Instead of Chemicals

Between the years of 1975 – 1976, the Cambodian farmer, Name Name, like most farmers in the country during that time, grew vegetables and rice to feed the soldiers of the Lon Nol regime.

Innovation of the Week: Getting to the Market

For many farmers, an abundant harvest is only the first step toward feeding their families and earning an income. Vegetables ripening in the field—or even harvested and stored nearby—are still a long way from the market where they can be sold for a profit.