Biotech Updates

Biosciences Key to Feeding Africa

April 8, 2011

Biosciences offer many regions in Africa an opportunity to produce surplus food for the first time. "Without biosciences research within Africa, agriculture will face a difficult future,"  says Calestous Juma, director of the Science, Technology and Globalization Project at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He gave these remarks during a film-interview at the official launch of a Bio-Innovate Program at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), in Nairobi, Kenya.

Bioresources Innovations Network for Eastern Africa Development (Bio-Innovate) Program provides competitive grants to African researchers to find ways to improve food security, address climate change, and identify environmentally sustainable ways of producing food. It is managed by the International Livestock Research Institute and co-located within the Biosciences eastern and central Africa (BecA) Hub. Bio-Innovate is being implemented in Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.

"The Bio-Innovate Program is important because it will stimulate new industries that are linked to the life sciences. Farmers will not benefit from producing more food unless they can get it to markets to process and sell," Juma added.

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