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Fostering Sustainability and Innovation in Agriculture
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Food Security

Purdue Ag Receives $32 Million Grant, AgraQuest Adds Ex-Monsanto CEO to Board, and Food Day Arrives

April 6, 2011 |

As 85% of available employment in Afghanistan is in the agricultural sector, Purdue University has received a 5-year grant of $31.9 million from USAID to help develop a more sustainable agriculture sector in Afghanistan. The grant will fund a program that provides educational training to agriculture faculty members from five major universities in Afghanistan. A major brain drain occurred when most of the highly trained faculty left the country shortly after the Soviet Invasion in the 1980s and Purdue hopes to provide a remedy. Read More

Seedstock Digest: Sustainable Ag and Tech News

March 25, 2011 |

Walmart and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) recently teamed up on an initiative to bolster rural farmers in Central America and integrate them into the company’s supply chain.  The agreement will help small farmers to earn more from their vegetable and fruit growing operations, which will in turn enable them to improve their economic livelihood.   The partnership unites Walmart’s nascent Global Sustainable Agriculture initiatives with the USAID’s Feed the Future program, a global hunger and food security initiative focused on investing in agricultural development to sustainably reduce hunger and poverty.  The U.S. has pledged $3.5 billion over the next 3 years Read More

Seedstock Digest – Sustainable Ag and Tech News

March 21, 2011 |

Husk Power Systems (HPS), a startup company based in India, has developed a renewable energy system, which uses the discarded husks of rice grains to generate electricity. When heated, rice husks release gas that can be harnessed to power generators. A small HPS processing plant can provide electricity to several hundred households. The husk power project is subsidized by the Indian government, which has set a goal of deriving 15 percent of the country’s energy from renewable sources by 2020. Read the full article: Indian Electricity Initiative Shines New Light on Farm Garbage. Read More

SIMLESA – Increasing Food Security through Sustainable Agriculture Initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa

March 18, 2011 |

SIMLESA, which stands for Sustainable Intensification of Maize-Legume Cropping Systems for Food Security in Eastern and Southern Africa, is a four-year program whose overall objective is to sustainably increase the productivity of selected maize-legume systems in eastern and southern Africa by 30% from the 2009 average for each target country by the year 2020.  The program with funding from the Australian government is comprised of scientists from Malawi, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Kenya. Read More

$24 Billion Needed for Sustainable Agriculture Initiative in India

March 14, 2011 |

According to the Hindustani Times, India’s agriculture ministry says that it needs 1,08,000 crore (~$24 billion) over the next 5 years for implementing the National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture under the Prime Minister’s National Action Plan on Climate Change.

A majority of the money, over 60%, will be put toward the development of new technologies, crop varieties, and practices to mitigate climate change. Read More