IITA: Scientists to detail progress and challenges regarding global cassava threats at meetings in Nigeria

 

 

20 March 2017. This week, progress on research efforts geared towards the improvement of the genetic potential and productivity of two most cultivated yam species in Africa will be the focus of the deliberations of scientists convening for the annual meeting of the AfricaYam project at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Ibadan.

 

 

IITA: Scientists to detail progress and challenges regarding global cassava threats at meetings in Nigeria

10 March 2017: Gathering in Ibadan, cassava experts will report progress on efforts to shorten the cassava breeding cycle, enhance flowering and seed set, educate and train African plant breeders, and implement gender-responsive variety selection

 

 

IBADAN, NIGERIA: The world’s top cassava experts will gather in Nigeria to report progress on developing new varieties of cassava with higher yield and nutritional content. The meeting will take place on March 14-16, at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), in Ibadan.

 

“Africa produces more than half of the world’s cassava — about 86 million tons from over 10 million hectares,” said Chiedozie Egesi, IITA-based project manager of the Next Generation Cassava Breeding (NextGen Cassava) project, who also works to biofortify cassava with essential micronutrients. “But disease pathogens and climate change threaten cassava production and jeopardize the income and food security of smallholder farmers. Since 2012, scientists on the NextGen Cassava project have been working to significantly increase the rate of genetic improvement in cassava breeding and unlock cassava’s full potential.”

 

 

Cassava is a clonally propagated crop and seed set is difficult. New varieties with enhanced productivity and nutritional traits typically take up to 10 years to develop.

 

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