Food & Farming

African small-scale farmers carve a giant message for world leaders in the very soil they farm

 

Africa has 25% of the world’s arable land but only produces 10% of its agricultural output. The continent spends US$35 billion on food imports a year, but if this money was invested in developing smallholder farming and rural infrastructure, Africa could feed itself.

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UK public unaware of the tough realities of farming

According to new research by The Prince’s Countryside Fund, the UK public appears to have a rosy view of farming life, with 1 in 4 (25%) UK adults liking the idea of giving up their day job and working on a farm. Read more »

With urban grit and pink lights, London warehouse farms fish and greens

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Salad leaves, herbs and leafy greens grow inside a warehouse run by GrowUp Urban Farms in Beckton, London, July 25, 2017. © Thomson Reuters Foundation/Lin Taylor

By Lin Taylor

Inside a warehouse in industrial southeast London, farmed tilapia swim in blue tubs filled with pristine water, ready to be sold to trendy restaurants across the capital.

In an adjacent room, under pink LED lights and controlled temperatures, shoots of salad leaves and herbs grow on recycled carpet fibre fertilised with the fish waste. In this cavernous, windowless space more suited to a nightclub than a farm, the greens are stacked on metal shelves stretching to the ceiling. Read more »

GM crops bounce back with gains in production areas

Ankoor, 10, carrying a basket of maize through a field. Credit: Panos/SciDev.Net

By Joiada Cruzate, SciDev.Net

  • GM crops showed revived global acceptance in 2016 after slumping in 2015
  • US leads as top GM grower followed by Brazil, Argentina, Canada and India
  • Asian countries slow to accept GM with India drawing the line on food crops
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Entrepreneurs are turning discarded grains, fruits and vegetables into food, drink and clean energy

Beer. Source: Pexels

By Marlene Cimons

When Tristram Stuart was growing up on a farm in England, he raised pigs as a hobby. He saw that much of the thrown-out food he was feeding them was actually fit for humans. One day, having found an appetizing loaf of sun-dried tomato bread in the pile of waste, he sat down and ate lunch with his pigs. Read more »

Brazil ranked world's most deadly nation for land activists as impunity reigns

A farmer evicted from this home in a land conflict with a powerful rancher poses for a photograph outside of Boca do Acre in Amazonas State, Brazil on May 26, 2017 (© Chris Arsenault, Thomson Reuters Foundation)

Standing beside broken floor boards and corrugated iron that once made-up his two-room house in the Amazon rainforest, Brazilian farmer Manoel Freitas da Conceicao is on the frontline of the world's most violent country for land activists.

Data released on 13th July 2017 by London-based campaign group Global Witness showed that 49 of 200 land rights activists killed last year were from South America's largest country, making Brazil the world's most dangerous nation for campaigners. Read more »

Bee groups embrace new EU partnership with trust the key

Beekeepers, scientists, policy-makers and other relevant parties are to set up a European bee partnership that could transform the way bee health is assessed in the EU.

The pledge was the main outcome of a major scientific meeting held in Brussels on Monday 26th June 2017 entitled “Towards a European Bee Partnership” that was attended by more than 120 delegates from scientific organisations, EU bodies, researchers, beekeeper and farmers’ groups, and NGOs.

Willingness to collaborate Read more »

Radical Kitchen at the Serpentine Pavilion: a summer of community picnic talks

Serpentine Pavilion 2017, designed by Francis Kéré. Serpentine Gallery, London (23 June – 8 October 2017) © Kéré Architecture, Photography © 2017 Iwan Baan

Inspired by Francis Kéré’s stories of gathering, debate and community around a tree in his village of Gando, Burkina Faso, the Serpentine Pavilion 2017 will become host to a series of community picnic talks this summer, Radical Kitchen: Recipes for Building Community and Creating Change. Read more »

Countries signed to UN-brokered illegal fishing treaty meet for first time

Fishermen unload their catch of mackerel at a fish market. UN Photo/M Guthrie

For the first time since a United Nations-brokered treaty to stop illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing went into force, the countries that endorsed it are meeting in Norway to discuss how to make it a success. Read more »

The Food Industry is cooking the planet

Large chemical fertiliser producers are successfully taking over the world’s food supply and exploiting it for profit. Image: Stuart Rankin via Flickr

One of the biggest contributors to climate change is the agricultural food industry, but the political will to tackle the issue is lacking.

By Paul Brown, Climate News Network Read more »

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