Heat-Tolerant Wheat Could Revolutionise The Agricultural Industry

Heat-Tolerant Wheat Could Revolutionise The Agricultural Industry

In sub-Saharan Africa, scientists have recently discovered the production of heat-tolerant wheat. With increasing temperatures forecasted to lead to significant difficulties yielding high wheat production in future years, heat-tolerant wheat could revolutionise the agricultural industry. Developed through non-GM molecular breeding techniques, these durum wheat varieties can withstand up to 40°C heat. Given their fast growing nature, the varieties can be cultivated during fallow periods.

The International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) scientists yielded over three tonnes of wheat per hectare in merely ninety days whilst conducting testing in the Senegal River Valley. Produced on a larger scale, the wheat varieties could yield up to 600,000 tons of new food without affecting rice production, resulting in additional revenue of an estimated € 180 million for smallholder farmers. This innovative technology could potentially assist farmers to adapt to rising temperatures and fight world hunger.

Southeast Asian countries Pakistan, Nepal, and Bhutan are experiencing severe natural hazards, including rapidly rising average temperatures, periods of severe droughts and devastating floods. The 2010 Pakistan floods damaged the country’s economy, infrastructure, and livelihood, resulting in 90 million people lacking proper access to food. Extreme changes in precipitation patterns in Nepal has adversely impacted rain-fed agricultural activities, causing flow-on effects upon the food typically eaten by Nepalese citizens. Meanwhile, Bhutan’s farmers have experienced mass losses and damage as a result of multiple climate hazards, including hailstorms, windstorms and flash flooding. Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) helps guide and strengthen the agriculture sector of these countries to ensure sustainable food security under circumstances of climate change.

With climate change leading to floods, droughts and, insect and plant diseases, farmers are already facing challenges. Fundamentally, CSA approaches aim to increase agricultural productivity, improve resilience to climate change, and reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions.

Learn more about this revolutionary approach to food security at the Climate Smart Agriculture Congress on the 6 – 7th March 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya. Hosted by the Aid & International Development Forum (AIDF), this summit will look into innovative financing, capacity building, partnerships and the use of technology to advance climate-smart agriculture practices in the African region. Find out more and register your attendance here: http://csa-africa.aidforum.org

To learn more about advancing food security in Southeast Asia, join the 4th annual Aid & Development Asia Summit, alongside 250+ high-profile participants and senior decision makers, including UN agencies, international and regional NGOs, regional governments, investors, donors and the private sector. Register your participation in the Aid and Development Asia Summit, held on the 13 – 16th June 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand, at http://asia.aidforum.org/register.

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