Did I really eat that?

Photographing food can help dietitians assess diets more easily
There’s been a thing on social media for a while of photographing what you’re about to eat – whether it’s to brag about what fancy restaurants you go to or to show off your cooking skills, with hashtags such as #Eatingfortheinsta, #foodie and #foodporn. But food photography could play a useful role in helping dietitians…
Read Further

World Food Day 2018 – Feeding our appetite for food security

By Dr Dennis Rangi – Director General, Development at CABI based in Nairobi, Kenya On this World Food Day 2018 the issue of feeding the world has never been in sharper focus. By 2050, agriculture will need to produce almost 50 percent more food, feed and biofuel than it did in 2012 just to meet…
Read Further

Exciting imaginations: New media formats to reach women and young people with agricultural extension messages

Campaigns create greater equality of access to information across farming households, but formats are as important as channels, argue Duncan Sones of the Africa Soil Health Consortium (ASHC) delivery team… The ASHC campaign-based approach explored the use of a variety of channels to build multiple media campaigns. ASHC has been testing the hypothesis that the…
Read Further

The impact of invasive species on human health

By Giuseppe Mazza and Elena Tricarico, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Italy Invasive species are becoming a popular topic in newspapers: when articles appear, they mainly report the damages invasive species can cause to our ecosystems (e.g. reduction or disappearance of native species as well as habitat modification) or to our economic activities: fishing or…
Read Further

CABI hosts the Common Framework volumes developed by the Tropical Agricultural Platform

Now freely available on the CABI.org website, the Common Framework on Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovation Systems produced by the Tropical Agriculture Platform. TAP is a coalition of more than 40 partners, initiated by the G20 in 2012. Its main focus is the development of national capacities for agricultural innovation. By helping to bridge the…
Read Further

Making progress on the biological management of Red Palm Weevil at KhairPur – Sindh

By Riaz Mahmood and Naeem-ul-Haq, CABI Central and West Asia (CWA), Rawalpindi Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) is of high economic importance for livelihood for hundreds of farmers families in Pakistan. Fruit and tree parts are of many uses. Date palm trees are spread over 98,000 hectares across Pakistan making it the fifth largest date…
Read Further

Dr Rob Reeder goes ‘bananas’ about pests and diseases on the Urban Farm Podcast

Plant pathologist Dr Rob Reeder has this week spoken to Greg Peterson of the US-based Urban Farm Podcast about how the global supply of bananas (particularly the Cavendish variety) could be put at risk from a three-pronged attack of pests and diseases. In the podcast, Dr Reeder reveals the reasons why the fungus known as…
Read Further

How Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) Enter the Food Chain in non-GMO Producing Countries

How Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) Enter the Food Chain in non-GMO Producing Countries - by Tatjana Brankov A superficial review of the legislation on transgenic foods and feeds indicates that consumers in non-GMO producing countries consume GMO-free food. However, less attention is paid to the fact that GMOs can enter the food chain through the import of transgenic foodstuff and feedstuff or by contamination. In some countries, transgenic food production is fully equal to conventional production. The concept of substantial equivalence, developed by the OECD and further elaborated by FAO/WHO “embodies the concept that if a new food or food component is found to be substantially equivalent to an existing food or food component, it can be treated in the same manner with respect to safety, i.e. the food or food component can be concluded to be as safe as the conventional food or food component” (FAO/WHO 1996). Such a…
Read Further

Building capacity for greater food security in Pakistan

As part of CABI’s mission to help farmers grow more and lose less, we have been funded by USAID – via the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) – to help Pakistan improve its sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) systems and therefore open up its fruit and vegetables to more high-end global markets that were previously untapped. Currently these products only contribute 13% of the country’s export but improvements to its SPS capabilities could see this number rise significantly.
Read Further

Around the World in 80 Spices

From the dawn of civilization spices were sought after eagerly. The seafarers of the ancient lands braved the raging waves and winds to go to distant lands in search of spices and aromatics. The discovery of the fairyland of spices and Spice Islands was one of the major aims of most circumnavigations that the age of Renaissance had witnessed. Such navigational expeditions and discoveries had opened up the flora and fauna of many countries to the rest of the world; the most notable among them was the ‘Columbian exchange’ following the discovery of American continent by Columbus and Amerigo Vespucci. Columbus went in search of India and black pepper but discovered America and red pepper. The exchanges that followed the discovery of new lands changed radically the cuisines of the world and medicines too, “reshaping every one’s food basket and medicine chest significantly.”
Read Further