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Upcoming webinar reviews Nagoya Protocol for sharing genetic resources

 The American Institute of Biological Sciences is holding a webinar on Thursday, February 27 when Patrick Reilly from the U.S. State Department will discuss the Nagoya Protocol, the system of rules for sharing genetic resources. 

During “Life Finds A Way: An Overview of the Nagoya Protocol from the U.S. Government,” Reilly will give a short history of how the protocol was developed, what it actually says (and what it doesn’t), the difference between monetary and non-monetary benefit sharing, and how the U.S. government can help.

 The Nagoya Protocol is a multilateral treaty that sets up a legal framework for utilizing genetic resources. It should be a part of every researcher’s thinking, from how to conduct research, to manage collections, and how to work with partners. Even for researchers based in the United States, familiarity with the protocol, and what it requires, is important as provider countries may have rules/regulations/laws that carry obligations that apply to samples even after they have left the country, such as restrictions on use, third party transfer, and tracking of any shared benefits.

The webinar will be February 27 from 1:30-2:30 p.m. Eastern Time. The session is free, but registration is required.

For more details or to register, go to

Bertiolis honored by peanut research colleages

David Bertioli

David and Soraya Bertioli, who are leading Peanut Innovation Lab projects that build on their groundbreaking work to map the peanut genome, were honored Thursday night at the closing of the 51st Annual American Peanut Research and Education Society conference.

The two scientists took home the

Soraya Bertioli

American Peanut Council Research Award, while David Bertioli also won the Corteva Agriscience Award for Research and Education.

Soraya Bertioli heads project, Use of novel genetic diversity for peanut varietal development in East Africa, work that involves tapping into wild relatives of peanut to provide new alleles to improve cultivated species to have resistance to groundnut rosette disease (GRD).

David Bertioli leads Incorporating new wild alleles to improve elite West African peanut cultivars, work focused in West Africa where the process has resulted in six new Senegalese varieties with improved yield stability, haulm mass, higher yield and larger seeds.

Funding offered African scientists to present bioeconomy research in Argentina

Funding is available for 20 scholars from African universities or research institutes to attend this year’s International Consortium on Applied Bioeconomy Research, but the deadline to apply is fast approaching.

This conference, held in Cordoba, Argentina, has the theme “Accelerating Bioeconomy Growth Through Applied Research and Policy Change.”

Applicants go through the regular abstract process to present a paper at the conference  and then fill in a form  which can also be accessed through the ICABR website,

The deadline for applications is February 25, 2020.



Presentation stresses nuts as part of healthy diet

A new report presented at the 15th Annual Worlds of Healthy Flavors (WOHF) event shows how peanuts can be an important component of a healthy diet. Walter Willett, a Harvard professor of nutrition and epidemiology, demonstrated through the EAT-Lancet Report that peanuts can be an important component of a healthy diet.

Willett’s presentation was sponsored by the National Peanut Board (NPB), pointed to the scientific consensus that half of a plate of a healthy diet consists of fruits, vegetables and nuts, including peanuts. (more…)

FAO asks for feedback from young people in agriculture in Africa

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the Government of Rwanda and the African Union, are holding a regional conference, Youth Employment in Agriculture as a Solid Solution to ending Hunger and Poverty in Africa: Engaging through Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and Entrepreneurship, on 20 and 21 August 2018.

For more information visit the conference website.

As part of the preparations for the conference, organizers are asking youth engaged in agriculture and rural development across Africa, especially those who may not travel to Rwanda, to share experiences, successes stories, lessons learned, and good practices, as well as raise questions on youth employment in agriculture and entrepreneurship, digital innovations and future of work in agriculture.

Go to the comment site here and log in to contribute your thoughts on the following topics:

  • Experience as a Youth in the Agriculture Sector: How would you describe your experience as an Africa youth engaged in the agriculture sector in your country? What motivated you to engage into the agriculture sector?
  • Major Achievements and Success Stories: What have been your major achievements? Do you have any experience or innovative ways that have helped you in your work that you would want to share? Do you have a success story – either your own or any other that you are aware of – of youth engaged in agriculture in your country? What is the story?
  • What the Rwanda Youth Conference Should Address: If given an opportunity, what question would you ask the experts at the Rwanda Youth conference on each of the three sub-themes – a). Youth Employment and Entrepreneurship, b). Digital Innovation to Overcome Agriculture Value-Chain Constraints, and c). Future of Work in Rural Economy – of the conference?





Program matches young African nutrition businesses with investors

The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) in partnership with Royal DSM and the SUN Business Network is organizing a Nutrition Dealroom for companies working in the agri-food value chain.

The first-of-its-kind program will be part of the Nutrition Africa Investor Forum scheduled 16 and 17 October 2018 in Nairobi. The forum will give an overview of investments in nutrition and current financing models, as well as identify gaps in investments. (more…)

Upcoming webinars address index insurance, green policies, gender issues in livestock

The Promise and Pitfalls of Index Insurance: Building Resilience Through Responsible Implementation

6 June, 9:30-11 a.m. (Eastern time)
Host: USAID Bureau for Food Security

Agriculture is an inherently risky activity. This risk exposure can make and keep farmers poor. Agricultural index insurance can help farmers avoid costly coping mechanisms and unlock opportunities for increased investment and greater resilience, but such positive development impacts largely depend on the quality of the index insurance product and its appropriateness in a particular context. (more…)

African Symposium on Mycotoxicology set for June

The deadline has been extended to submit an abstract for the 2nd African Symposium on Mycotoxicology (ASM), which will be held 24 to 27 June 2018 in Mombasa, Kenya under the auspices of the International Society on Mycotoxicology (ISM). The conference will be held at the Leisure Lodge Resort in Mombasa, Kenya. The conference theme “Mitigating mycotoxin contamination in the African food and feed chain” aims to create awareness on the importance of mycotoxins in food and feed safety, human and animal health and the economic impact on the African continent.

The date for the submission of abstracts has been extended to 28 February 2018. (more…)