In 2013-2014, numerous new rust-resistant wheat varieties that are high yielding and broadly adapted were released in Central and West Asia as part of collaborative work by the International Winter Wheat Improvement Program (Turkey-CIMMYT-ICARDA) for winter wheat and CIMMYT for spring wheat. Partners from the region contributed in identification, selection and promotion of these new varieties, which will contribute to food security in this vulnerable region. Central and West Asia grow approximately 15 million hectares of winter wheat and fall-planted spring wheat. The region includes the countries with the world’s highest wheat consumption per capita, such as Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Most of these countries import wheat to satisfy increasing demand. Wheat is grown under both irrigated and rain-fed conditions. Yellow and leaf rusts are the main diseases reducing yield because farmers cultivate susceptible varieties. Read more…
In an urgent response to the endemic threat that wheat stripe (yellow) rust poses to global wheat production, ICARDA and a partnership of leading international agricultural research centers, national research institutions, and policy makers from rust-affected countries recently met in Izmir, Turkey (April 28-May 1), to review the most recent science innovations, mobilize a global strategy, and initiate action on the ground to combat future rust epidemics. Read more…
Wheat researchers in India learned about CIMMYT’s newest advanced wheat lines during field days this spring at each of the locations of the Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA) —Jabalpur, Pusa-Bihar and Ladowal-Ludhiana. The events were designed to link Indian wheat breeders and pathologists with a new Feed the Future-USAID
project that uses genomic selection to rapidly develop climate-resilient wheat varieties for South Asia. Read more…
ICARDA and Turkey gather international scientists and policymakers to tackle wheat yellow rust disease
In an urgent response to the endemic threat that wheat stripe rust (also known as “yellow rust”) now poses to global wheat production, a partnership of leading international agricultural research centers, national research institutions, and policy makers from rust-affected countries are meeting in Izmir, Turkey during 28 April-01May to review the most recent science innovations, mobilize a global strategy, and initiate action on the ground to combat future rust epidemics. Organized by the Turkish Ministry of Food, Agriculture, and Livestock (Gıda, Tarım ve Hayvancılık Bakanlığı) and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), with support from the Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI), the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), the CGIAR Research Program on Wheat, and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the event has drawn 200 participants from more than 25 countries.
Read more about the event. (Photo: E. Mohmand/CIMMYT)
ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN: Jeanie Borlaug visited Pakistan during 21-23 April with members of the Borlaug Global Rust Initiative (BGRI) team to celebrate Norman Borlaug’s 100th birthday and the 50th anniversary of Dr. Borlaug’s initial trips to Pakistan. Father of the Green Revolution who passed away in 2009, Borlaug introduced semi-dwarf, high-yielding wheat varieties that dramatically increased Pakistan’s wheat production and helped eliminate famine in South Asia.
Read more on the BGRI blog… (Photo: A. Yaqub/CIMMYT)
Efforts to put wheat on the food and trade agenda in Africa recently came together at the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) meeting in Accra during 15–20 July 2013, when senior research, development, and policy experts met with representatives of CGIAR’s WHEAT research program to develop a strategy for promoting African wheat production.
For Africa to benefit, the soil has to improve. The Green Revolution in Africa has to start with smallholder rainfed farmers and conservation agriculture (CA) is a possible intervention, more affordable than, for example, building irrigation schemes. Read an interview with Saidi Mkomwa, Executive Secretary of the African Conservation Tillage Network (ACT) about the current status and future of CA in Africa.
‘The disease that never sleeps’ is how Nobel Prize winner Norman Borlaug once described wheat rust, a group of deadly, constantly changing fungal pathogens that pose a serious threat to food security worldwide.
The CRP WHEAT will be hosting a side event on Wheat for Africa at the Africa Agriculture Science Week (15-20 July) on 16 July in Accra, Ghana. Join us if you can and follow the AAWS Blog and #AASW6 on Twitter.