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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment

News for 2014

All our latest news.

For media enquiries, contact Rachel Winks.

Season's Greetings from CABI

11 December 2014 - We would like to take this opportunity to wish you season’s greetings and thank you for your continued support in 2014.  CABI’s ability to improve lives worldwide is made possible by the generous contributions of the many members, donors and partners we work with. This year, we have selected some highlights of our work solving problems in agriculture and the environment to share with you. We wish you our very best season’s greetings, and a happy and prosperous 2015....

On World Soil Day CABI publishes new book, Soil Carbon

5 December 2014 – To coincide with World Soil Day today, CABI is publishing Soil Carbon. This book brings together the essential evidence and policy opportunities regarding the global importance of soil carbon for sustaining Earth's life support system for humanity. Soil Carbon comes at a time when the debate around the importance of soil in relation to climate change, ecology and food security is steadily growing. The management of healthy soil is becoming an increasingly important subject at ...

CABI Compendia celebrate 20 year anniversary

4 December 2014 – Today, CABI is celebrating the 20 year anniversary of its Compendium Programme. The first compendium on crop protection began in 1994 and was published in 1998. More have followed year on year. The CABI Compendium Programme encompasses five encyclopedic mixed-media resources covering animal health and production; aquaculture; crop protection; forestry; and invasive species. Each compendium brings together abstracts, full text articles, datasheets, images, maps and more, giving ...

New report published on agriculture and ICTs

27 November 2014 – The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agriculture and Food for Development has published a report on Harnessing the Potential: Exploring ICTs and Knowledge Sharing in agriculture. Evidence given by CABI was included in the report. CABI was called upon to talk to the APPG because of its experience working in agriculture and knowledge management, including Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). In July, Strategic Business Development Director, Phil Abrahams, gave ...

Japanese Knotweed Alliance launches new-look website

19 November 2014 – The Japanese Knotweed Alliance, of which CABI is a partner, today launched its new-look website. With updated content, design and navigation, the website makes it even easier to find information about the Alliance’s research of biological or natural control of Japanese knotweed in Great Britain: http://www.cabi.org/japaneseknotweedalliance/ Japanese knotweed is one of Great Britain’s most destructive non-native, invasive weeds. It can grow more than a metre a month and is fam...

CABI expert, Dr Arne Witt, to speak at Economist Feeding the World conference

10 November 2014 – Senior CABI invasive species expert, Dr Arne Witt, will be speaking at the Economist’s Feeding the World conference in 2015. Dr Witt will concentrate on the impact that Invasive Alien Species (IAS) – microbes, insects and plants introduced to new regions, through human activities – have on food security and livelihoods. The introduction of non-native species, many of which subsequently become invasive, poses a threat to farmers in the developed and developing worlds alike. In...

CABI upgrades to COUNTER4 for product usage statistics

10 November 2014 – CABI is delighted to announce it has upgraded to COUNTER version 4 (COUNTER4) for its product usage statistics. Reports are now available for CABI products hosted on CAB Direct and the CABI platform. By moving to the latest version of COUNTER usage statistics, CABI remains COUNTER compliant, and can offer significant improvements to usage reports across its products. A key update to the new COUNTER reporting is the ability to gather information in real time. While COUNTER3 r...

Plantwise knowledge bank wins Open Data Award for Social Impact

4 November 2014 - the CABI-led Plantwise programme has been announced winner of the Open Data Award for Social Impact. This is the latest accolade for this innovative open access platform for knowledge to help farmers lose less of what they grow to crop pests and diseases. Plantwise knowledge bank Global Director Shaun Hobbs accepted the award from Open Data Institute Chairman and Co-founder Sir Nigel Shadbolt at the ODI Summit gala dinner at the Museum of London. Also nominated for the Social ...

Impacts of invasive plants in Indonesia

31 October 2104 – This new video (below) shows the impact that an invasive, non-native plant, Acacia nilotica, is having on the Indonesian island of Java. The Acacia has taken over the landscape, devastating the savannah that the endangered banteng – a wild species of cattle – needs for survival, pushing the animal to the brink of extinction. CABI is a partner on this international project called ‘Removing barriers to invasive species management in production and protection forest in south east...

Behind the scenes of Plantwise plant clinics in Uganda

29 October 2014 - PhD student, Andrew Tock, of the Warwick Crop Centre, has spent three months monitoring Plantwise plant clinic success in Uganda as part of a BBSRC-funded Doctoral Training Partnership. During this time, he kept a research diary (video below), describing his experiences in Uganda and the day-to-day work of plant doctors in the field. To read an interview with Andrew, visit the BBSRC website: http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/news/food-security/2014/141029-f-plant-clinics-in-uga...

Australia and Africa to work together on plant biosecurity, change champions on the way

29 October 2014 - A cadre of ‘change champions’ are to be trained to improve plant biosecurity in ten east and southern African countries. Plant biosecurity specialists in national plant protection organisations, and in trade and private sector organisations have identified plant biosecurity training needs for ten African countries. Matched training in Australia will follow, with the resulting ‘biosecurity change champions’ working to improve regional biosecurity to impact farmer incomes, food ...

Ugandan medical librarians win African health award

21 October 2014 – Two medical librarians from Uganda, Dr Alison Kinengyere and Ms Glorias Asiimwe, respectively Chair and Secretary of UG-AHILA, (the local country chapter of the Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa) yesterday received a prestigious award for their report on health information activities in their country. Granted by AHILA and Partnerships in Health Information (Phi), the prize of £500 was sponsored by CABI, publishers of world-renowned bibliographic databas...

CABI expert, Dr Julie Flood, to talk at major new plant health conference

16 October 2014 – Senior CABI plant health expert, Dr Julie Flood, will be speaking at the International Conference on Global Plant Health Risks and Consequences. This major new conference, jointly hosted by the Food and Environment Research Agency and the CSIRO's Biosecurity Flagship (Australia), will take place on 27-28 October 2014 near York in the UK. It brings together experts in plant health science, risk, policy making and economics to discuss the current and future threat posed to global...

CABI joins Australia-Africa Plant Biosecurity Partnership to aid agricultural trade

16 October 2014 – On World Food Day, CABI is proud to announce it has joined the Australia-Africa Plant Biosecurity Partnership, a two-year A$1m programme to strengthen skills in plant biosecurity in Africa. The aim is to help facilitate trade, including intra-regional trade, by addressing plant pest and disease problems that hinder agricultural exports and threaten food security. The programme will be delivered by a consortium including CABI, the Crawford Fund and CSIRO, and led by the Plant B...

New soil health website supports African farmers on World Food Day

16 October 2014 – The Africa Soil Health Consortium (ASHC) is today launching its new website, giving people who work with and support smallholder farmers a one-stop library of materials on Integrated Soil Fertility Management (ISFM). Coinciding with World Food Day (16 October), the launch of the new website marks an important milestone in ASHC’s mission to improve the livelihoods of farmers in Africa. Making practical soil health information accessible to the people who support farmers is cent...

CABI attends hospitality and tourism conference, EuroCHRIE Dubai 2014

6 October 2014 – CABI is delighted to announce it will be attending hospitality and tourism conference, EuroCHRIE Dubai 2014. The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management, based in Dubai, UAE, will be proudly hosting the event from 6-9 October 2014. As a scientific publisher, with tourism as one of its key areas of specialization, CABI is excited to be a part of such a prestigious event. Conference attendees are warmly welcomed to visit CABI’s booth in the exhibition hall. CABI will have a st...

HRH Duke of Gloucester visits CABI in Wallingford

26 September 2014 – Today, HRH The Duke of Gloucester visited CABI’s head office in Wallingford, Oxfordshire, to learn about the organization’s work solving problems in agriculture and the environment. The Duke was greeted by Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Oxfordshire, John Harwood, and CABI’s Executive Director, Publishing, Andrea Powell. Chairman of South Oxfordshire District Council, Cllr Anne Midwinter, Chair of Crowmarsh Parish Council, John Griffin, the Mayor of Wallingford, Cllr Jane Titchener a...

UK annual report 2013 - 2014

1 September 2014 – The UK annual centre report is now available. This report focuses on CABI's UK-based staff. It outlines their activities and work in 2013 - 2014.  If you would like to download the PDF of the report (6MB) then click on the image or heading.  For all our latest stories, read our news....

CABI releases rust fungus to control invasive weed, Himalayan balsam

26 August 2014 – From today, not-for-profit research organization, CABI, will be releasing a rust fungus at locations in Berkshire, Cornwall and Middlesex as part of field trials to control the non-native, invasive weed Himalayan balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) using natural means. Himalayan balsam has rapidly become one of the UK’s most widespread invasive weeds, colonizing river banks, waste land, damp woodlands, roadways and railways. The Environment Agency estimates that the weed occupies o...

Scientific publisher, CABI, makes eBooks available in China

18 August 2014 – CABI is proud to announce that it has entered into agreement with CNPIEC, the China National Publications Import and Export (Group) Corporation, to make CABI’s eBooks available through its CNP eReading platform. The decision to work with CNPIEC was taken to increase the exposure of CABI’s eBooks in the growing Chinese market and maximize the choices users have about how to access CABI content. CABI publishes high quality titles written by world experts in agriculture and applie...

CABI to work with Unilever protecting tea crops in India

11 August 2014 – As part of a wider commitment to sustainable sourcing of all of its key agricultural materials by 2020, Unilever has announced it will collaborate with CABI, to undertake a major scientific research study evaluating the environmental and economic feasibility of applying alternative methods to protect tea from pests in India. This move is aimed at fostering better understanding of, evaluating current growing practices in and raising the bar on sustainable production of tea. In t...

Officials from across Africa join IPPC, Plantwise and FAO for collaboration on plant health

5 August 2014 – For farmers across Africa and around the world, tackling crop pest problems in a safe and sustainable way is a major challenge. Currently between 30-40% of crops on average are lost to pests, and while the technology and knowledge exist to reduce losses, vital plant health information remains out of reach for many farmers. It is up to each country to find solutions through research, regulation, education and extension to improve access to knowledge and reporting for sustainable p...

Workshop held on future of Invasive Species Compendium

4 August 2014 – Members of the Invasive Species Consortium from the US, Mexico, Caribbean and South Pacific met in Washington DC today and unanimously agreed to keep the Invasive Species Compendium (ISC) an open access resource for a further five years. The ISC has been resourced by a diverse international consortium of government departments, development aid organizations and private companies. Consortium members agreed that work on the ISC to date was of global importance and utility, and shou...

Plantwise knowledge bank goes from strength to strength

28 July 2014 – Following a recent review of its progress, Plantwise can report that 2013 was a very productive year. To show the scale of the growth of its knowledge bank, Plantwise has created an infographic. For more information, visit the Plantwise knowledge bank. Plantwise is CABI's food security programme, which helps farmers grow more and lose less of what they produce. The programme's online knowledge bank – a global resource that helps combat plant health problems – had over 120,000 vis...

CABI shares knowledge with African universities

25 July 2014 – Each year, top university representatives from across Africa gather at the RUFORUM conference to learn about new developments in education and exchange ideas for collaboration. This year’s event, held in Maputo, Mozambique, from 21 July – 25 July, was an opportunity for CABI to increase awareness of its knowledge and training resources, especially those made available for the first time through its Plantwise programme. The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agri...

CABI celebrates 30 years of UKAS accreditation

22 July 2014 – CABI is proud to announce 30 years as a UKAS accredited laboratory providing confidence and trust for our customers. The annual assessment undertaken in July to the internationally recognized standard, ISO 17025, demonstrates our competency, impartiality and performance capability. The initial accreditation in 1984 for mould growth and fuel testing has expanded considerably; we are now the only UK laboratory to offer on-site fungal sampling and the molecular identification of fung...

Applications now open for new ICM degree from CABI and University of Neuchatel

16 July 2014 – CABI and the University of Neuchatel are now accepting applications for a unique new degree programme in Integrated Crop Management (ICM). Students from around the world will come to Canton Jura, Switzerland to learn from experts about sustainable agriculture strategies to apply in practice and policy back home. Scholarship opportunities are available to help this programme reach high-calibre individuals worldwide. This is the first post-graduate degree to be offered in the Jura r...

World expert, Temple Grandin, addresses Royal Veterinary College on animal welfare

11 July 2014 – Temple Grandin, the world renowned expert on animal behaviour, today gave a characteristically stimulating talk to more than 100 students, faculty staff and members of the general public at the Royal Veterinary College’s Centre for Animal Welfare. The event, organized by CABI and RVC was entitled ‘Improving Animal Welfare’ and in it Temple outlined key strategies for developing humane handling systems for livestock processing facilities. She called for “measureable, not vague” mi...

AIRCA reacts to third meeting of G20 Agricultural Chief Scientists

11 July 2014 – G20 Agricultural Chief Scientists recently published a communiqué following their third meeting of 19-20 June held in Brisbane, Australia. The communiqué summarizes key issues for tackling global food security. The Association of International Research and Development Centers for Agriculture (AIRCA), of which CABI is a member, is encouraged with the consensus reached at the G20 meeting on the urgency of the food security challenge. Feeding a population predicted to grow to nine b...

Go-ahead for new mobile project to tackle malnutrition in Africa and Asia

4 July 2014 – CABI-led consortium gains GSMA funding to help three million people access nutrition information using mobile technology More than three million people in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia will soon be able to access vital nutrition and health information using mobile technology as part of a new project to help tackle malnutrition – a leading cause of child death worldwide. The GSMA Mobile for Development Foundation has appointed a CABI-led consortium as the global content provide...

CABI's Dennis Rangi speaks out on biodiversity and invasive species

28 June 2014 – Dr Dennis Rangi, CABI's Executive Director for International Development, spoke out this week at the 18th meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) held on 23-28 June 2014 in Montreal, Canada. He delivered a statement at the meeting and talked about the importance of protecting biodiversity and the livelihoods of smallholder farmers by tackling the spread of invasive species. The SBSTTA was established by Article 25 of the Conventio...

World Cup mascot under threat

12 June 2014 – Brazil’s World Cup mascot, Fuleco the three-banded armadillo, is under threat. Its habitat in Caatinga, Northeast Brazil, is being smothered by rubbervine, an invasive weed. Already thought to be extinct until its rediscovery in the 1990s, the armadillo has suffered a substantial decline in numbers over the past decade. Causes include loss of habitat. Known as devil’s claw, rubbervine weed (Cryptostegia madagascariensis) was introduced to Brazil from its native Madagascar as an a...

CABI-RVC symposium explores the future of farm animal welfare

11 June 2014 – CABI, together with the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), London, today held a symposium marking the 50th anniversary of Ruth Harrison’s influential Animal Machines – a book that heralded an entire movement in farm animal welfare and the welfare of animals in intensive production. The symposium, Animal Machines of the Future, was the 3rd CABI Symposium on Animal Welfare and Behaviour, and also launched the new book Dilemmas in Animal Welfare, by Appleby, Sandoe and Weary. CABI is a ...

CABI receives prestigious award for supporting graduate tourism research

7 June 2014 – CABI has received a prestigious award for supporting the 3rd Interdisciplinary Tourism Research Conference / 7th World Conference for Graduate Research in Tourism, Hospitality and Leisure in Istanbul, Turkey, by providing book prizes to the conference’s winning graduate researchers. CABI authors were on hand at the conference to present the books to the successful graduates. The conferences provide an opportunity for researchers to competitively submit papers focusing on aspects o...

Looking back at a year of impact: CABI in Review 2013

23 May 2014 – We are delighted to bring you CABI in Review 2013. Each year, we publish an annual review to tell the stories of our projects and the impact they have on the farmers, extension workers, scientists, policy makers and professional practitioners we work with. This year, we pay special attention to the individuals behind our projects. We introduce you to Martin, a Plantwise plant doctor, who, using plant health knowledge, has helped hundreds of smallholder farmers to protect their c...

National Geographic Hackathon

4 May 2014 – Check out this video to hear how CABI contributed to National Geographic’s Future of Food Hackathon in Washington DC last weekend. CABI’s Dr Martin Parr and Dr Timothy Holmes of the Plantwise knowledge bank describe the type of open access data from CABI which was offered to participants of the hackathon, and how these resources for agricultural information are helping to change the story for food security. Linked Development data contributed to the event:http://linked-development....

CABI celebrates Earth Day

22 April 2014 – We at CABI spend a lot of time researching some of the most extreme challenges facing the environment, and supporting livelihoods that depend on it with programmes like Plantwise. Every year the international community celebrates Earth Day on 22 April, which draws public attention to challenges like climate change, food insecurity, loss of biodiversity, habitat destruction and how we can all play a part in the solution. To raise awareness today, we’re sharing some of our Earth Da...

Steering Committee of the China-CABI Joint Laboratory held in China

3 April 2014 – The 6th Steering Committee meeting was held in Dehong Prefecture of Yunnan Province, China on 13-14 March 2014. It brought together eight Steering Committee members and several other key players to review how the Joint Laboratory has progressed during 2013, carry out project site visits, and look at and agree plans of the Joint Laboratory for 2014.  The Joint Laboratory is an initiative between the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and CABI whose Steering Committee is made up of se...

CABI produces new video on invasive weeds in Africa

1 April 2014 – CABI, together with Tmax Productions, have produced a video called the ‘Green Invasion – Destroying Livelihoods in Africa.” The short film (approx. 7mins long) details how invasive weeds are impacting on the lives of rural communities in East Africa. Although a large number of non-native species have become invasive in the region, this film focusses on four of the most problematic species, namely: Chromolaena odorata (Devil weed), Parthenium hysterophorus (Famine weed), Prosopis ...

Sustainable solutions to soil pest problems in Rwanda

1 March 2014 – A two-year project to transfer technology from China to Rwanda started earlier this year. The project, financed by the Agri TT  programme, is supporting Rwanda’s efforts to improve its soil and solve its insect pest problems with biologically-based crop protection technology from China. The project will use beneficial insect-killing nematodes to control soil insect pests in vegetable production. Over 90% Rwandan’s are dependent on agriculture so any crop losses (including those c...

CEO Trevor Nicholls live at The Economist's Feeding the World 2014

13 February 2014 – Bringing together key players in food security from the private, public and civil society sector, the Economist’s annual Feeding the World conference took place in London today and highlighted CABI’s efforts to level the playing field for the smallholder farmer. Invited to speak on the afternoon panel focusing on trade and supply chain resources, CABI’s CEO Dr Trevor Nicholls spoke about the need for delivering access to ‘appropriate technologies’ for the smallholder farmers a...

CABI Executive Council paves way for exciting new work in global food security

22 January 2014 – CABI kicked off the New Year holding its 393rd Executive Council meeting and paving the way for new projects and initiatives contributing to global food security. Representatives from 31 CABI Member Countries met in London, together with CABI’s Board members, and a number of CABI staff led by CEO, Dr Trevor Nicholls. At the meeting, Executive Council members reviewed the positive results achieved during 2013 through CABI’s work in international development and publishing. This...

Technical cooperation between Embrapa and CABI begins pilot project in Mato Grosso

8 January 2014 – A technical group formed by researchers from the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) and teachers of Federal University of Mato Grosso (UFMT) and the University of Mato Grosso (Unemat) began to instruct agents on technical assistance and extension the diagnosis of pests and diseases in horticulture. The activity carried out between 2–4 January at Embrapa agrosilvopastoral in Sinop (MT), marked the beginning of the implementation of a pilot project through the p...

News from 2013.