Mapping crops: Are we there yet?

17 May 2017

I ran across a bunch of nice crop maps on the internet1, so I made a GIF for you (click on it to get it cycling). You’re welcome. I’m reliably informed the source is Monfreda et al. (2008). You can download the data in multiple formats, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen the headline […]

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Kew helping protect your morning joe

16 May 2017

Remember a short blog post from seven years back saying how Ethiopia had just protected some wild coffee forests? We Nibbled yesterday a UN press release saying that a Biosphere Reserve had been created in Ethiopia to protect wild coffee. But actually it turns out that it is no less than TWO reserves that have […]

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Genetic erosion: it’s complicated

16 May 2017

From the CIAT blog: Putting true numbers on diversity loss turns out to be a complicated and contested business, with no shortage of strong opinions. One big part of the problem is that there aren’t many good ways to count the diversity that existed before it disappeared. Researchers have done some work to assess the […]

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Brainfood: Canola model, Saline dates, High rice, Perennial wheat, European cowpea, Mesoamerican oil palm, Seed viability, Citrus identity, Poor cassava, Horse domestication, Wild tomatoes, Tea genome, Veggie breeding, Classical brassicas

15 May 2017

Development of a Statistical Crop Model to Explain the Relationship between Seed Yield and Phenotypic Diversity within the Brassica napus Genepool. Look for primary raceme area. Screening of Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) Cultivars for Salinity Tolerance. In Oman, Manoma and Umsila are particularly tolerant. Genetic structure and isolation by altitude in rice landraces of […]

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Nutrition toolkit all set to make agriculture oh so sensitive

12 May 2017

FAO’s Toolkit on Nutrition-sensitive Agriculture and Food Systems is out. Without a huge amount of fanfare, as far as I can tell, which is a bit surprising. Anyway, good to see agrobiodiversity properly highlighted in multiple places, including as an entry point for various interventions, and as part of several indicators. Meanwhile, that call for […]

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The price of tea in Kenya

12 May 2017

“When countries change their trade policies to protect themselves against price falls, small farmers – particularly those in developing countries – tend to lose profits,” said Will Martin, senior research fellow at IFPRI. “This platform gives governments access to the most recent information available, so they can make informed decisions on food policy that avoid […]

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EucarpiaGR2017: better late than never

11 May 2017

Oh gosh, I forgot to give the obligatory shout-out to the EUCARPIA meeting, this year on “Mobilizing the green gold of plant genetic resources.” Silly me. Follow what’s left on #eucarpiaGR2017, there’s some really interesting stuff on. The Doyen of seed system research Mauricio Bellon presented new data and analyses from sites around the world. […]

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Ghostly Bramley

11 May 2017

I don’t think I linked last year to the sad news of the impending demise of the original Bramley apple tree. I did link a year before to the news that the pie filling made from said apple was being protected by the EU. And I’ll link now to an article about what Brexit may […]

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Nibbles: Rice in Trinidad, Sweet potatoes in Ethiopia, EU crop diversity double, Sir Peter on the ginkgo, Forages, Brazilian peanuts, Seed moisture, Phenotyping double, Svalbard deposit, CATIE data, Herbarium double, Seed #resistance, Father of the apple, Agave congress

11 May 2017

African rice out of Africa, and out of the genebank. The other way around for sweet potato. Markers for micronutrients. And diversity for taste… The deep history of the ginkgo. Study plants to decrease the effects of burping. Brazil rationalizes peanut collections. Measuring moisture in seeds. Big data for better seeds. And not only in […]

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Citrus in a nutshell

11 May 2017

Look, I suppose I could try and explain that recent Citrus phylogeny paper in Annals of Botany. But am I really likely to do better than this graphic? I didn’t think so. Important to know what’s what. But if all that’s just too much for you, wind down by listening to Helena Attlee on Eat […]

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