So what's the problem?
The coffee industry is hugely important to the economies of India and various African countries. Exports bring in essential foreign exchange and the chain of jobs involved in the production, processing and marketing of coffee from seed to cup provides employment for millions of people. Many coffee farmers are small-scale growers who depend on it for a large proportion of their income. This is especially true for those who live in hilly terrain where other crops struggle and coffee is the only option.
What is this project doing?
CABI is implementing a project which covers India, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and Zimbabwe. This project has the support of the five countries’ governments, the International Coffee Organisation and the Common Fund for Commodities. The overall aim of the project is to reduce the economic and environmental costs of disease control for smallholder coffee farmers by reducing losses caused by disease.
Results so far
Incidence, severity and distribution of coffee leaf rust and coffee berry diseases and their socioeconomic impacts has now been established for the five countries. And, the assessment of the stakeholders resulted in the inclusion of the main ones in the project.
In addition, of the team documented the impact of coffee diseases and smallholder coffee farmers’ coping strategies.
We have identified varieties with resistance to coffee leaf rust and berry diseases, and and with very good vigour and yield characteristics. The varieties are now being evaluated for the quality of the cup. In Uganda, the project is also multiplying the varieties resistant to coffee wilt disease.
In addition, capacity building of national staff in the African countries is supporting MSc and PhD studies on coffee related topics.
Meanwhile, studies on coffee leaf rust revealed a range of previously unknown races (varieties) some of which are attacking previously resistant varieties. This information is invaluable for developing durable resistance. However, as disease types vary, there is an urgent need for effective quarantine measures.
As an interim measure, environmentally-friendly fundigicides have also been identified and will be recommended in respective countries. Some biocontrol agents are also showing promise in India.
Address: ICRAF Complex, United Nations Avenue, Gigiri, P.O. Box 633-00621, Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 72 24450/62
Tel: +254 20 7224450
Tel: +254 020 7224450
Tel: +254 20 7224450 /62
Address: Bakeham Lane, Egham, Surrey, TW209TY, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1491 829043
Guaranteeing credit to coffee farmers in Ethiopia and Rwanda
Rehabilitating coffee plantations in Angola
Stopping the coffee berry borer in its tracks
Invasive Plant Ecology in Natural and Agricultural Systems
by B Booth, S Murphy, C Swanton
21 September 2010
Paperback / 9781845936051 / £37.50 / $72.50 / €50.00
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