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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment

News for 2018

All our latest news.

For media enquiries, contact Wayne Coles (w.coles@cabi.org) or Rachel Winks (r.winks@cabi.org).

Read the CABI Blog here.

C&A Foundation looks forward to organic cotton partnership with CABI Pakistan

10 December 2018 - The C&A Foundation is looking to forge a partnership with CABI in Pakistan to share knowledge and expertise in fighting agriculture pests and diseases that could affect the production of organic cotton crops. Mashood Ahmed, C&A Foundation's Country Advisor for Pakistan, met with Dr Babar Bajwa, Regional Director  - CABI Central and West Asia, to explore avenues of partnership such as Integrated Pest Management (IPM), the Farmer Field School (FFS) approach, technology ...

Delight and degrees all round for Integrated Crop Management students

6 December 2018 – Twelve international students celebrated the completion of the 2018 Masters of Advanced Studies in Integrated Crop Management (MAS in ICM) course at the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Coordinated by CABI and the University of Neuchâtel, the MAS in ICM programme provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the principles of good crop management, with an emphasis on productivity, and economic and environmental sustainability. Topics covered during the nine mon...

CABI participates in international partnership to protect Europe's forests from pests and diseases

4 December 2018 - CABI’s experts in the biological control of invasive tree pests and pathogens – such as the box tree moth – are participating in an international partnership of scientists, experts and stakeholders to help protect Europe’s forests from devastating pests and diseases. Lukas Seehausen is leading the CABI project team of scientists that also includes René Eschen and Marc Kenis, to develop a work package of tools and bests practices for the biological fight against tree pests and ...

Makerere University joins Script training course aimed at nurturing future science journalists

4 December 2018 - More than 200 students at Makerere University are set to benefit from a new SciDev.Net training course called Script aimed at nurturing the science journalists of tomorrow and addressing the lack of high-quality science reporting in Africa. The Script training course and networking programme, which is funded by Robert Bosch-Stiftung and was launched at the Next Einstein Forum in Kigali, Rwanda early this year, will be taught to students within the Ugandan university’s Departme...

New upgraded invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool launched

30 November 2018 - This week CABI launched the full version of its invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool, a free and open access online resource available via the Invasive Species Compendium that helps users make decisions about invasive species and identify possible risks in countries, provinces and states. Following beta testing, the tool now includes new features and improvements such as an additional country filter based on trade data, enhanced sharing of horizon scans, improved CSV output...

CABI grows relations with ACIAR following trip to Australia

29 November 2018 - CABI CEO Dr Trevor Nicholls and Sally Stone, the newly appointed Head of APAC Sales, have been busy strengthening relations with the Australian Centre for International Agriculture (ACIAR) following a recent trip to Australia. The trip to ACIAR’s offices in Canberra marked Sally’s (pictured fourth right) first day at CABI and was a time for her and Dr Nicholls learn about ACIAR’s new strategy and forward plans and the opportunities that may arise from them. A draft Partnersh...

CABI joins partnership to help boost banana productivity in Uganda and Tanzania

28 November 2018 - CABI is working in partnership to share its expertise in creating, managing, curating and disseminating scientific information as part of a project to help boost banana production worth $4.3 billion to the economies in Uganda and Tanzania. Development Communications experts at CABI are collaborating with organizations including the National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO) in Uganda and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Bioversity Internatio...

CABI staff play a starring role in GODAN’s award-winning documentary web series

28 November 2018 - CABI staff have played a key role in helping to direct GODAN’s Open Water documentary web series which has scooped the Global Digital Futures accolade at the tve Global Sustainability Film Awards. GODAN, of which CABI is a founding member and a host for the organization, supports the proactive sharing of open data to make information about agriculture and nutrition available, accessible and usable to deal with the urgent challenge of ensuring world food security. The Open Wa...

CABI launch Plantwise programme in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan

15 November 2018 - A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between CABI and Pakistan's Agriculture Department Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) to launch the Plantwise programme in the province. The aim of the agreement is to build the capacity of agricultural staff of KPK and to provide research-based advisory services to farmers to help them grow more healthy and profitable crops - losing less to a range of pests and diseases. Plantwise is a global programme led by CABI, which helps farme...

Member of CABI-led SAIRLA Ghana National Learning Alliance scoops Best Agricultural Reporter award

8 November 2018 - A media practitioner and active member of the CABI-led Sustainable Agricultural Intensification Research and Learning in Africa (SAIRLA) Ghana National Learning Alliance (Ghana NLA) won the Best Agricultural Reporter in print award at the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA) awards in Accra. Ama Amankwaa Baafi impressed the judges with her story ‘Lack of Research Blamed for Fall Armyworm Invasion’ , which, published in Ghana’s leading newspaper the Daily Graphic, sought to draw ...

CALA Homes and CABI complete on land sale in Wallingford

5 November 2018 - CALA Homes (Chiltern) Ltd has completed the acquisition of land from CABI (Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International) in Wallingford. The sale will enable CABI to build a brand new, sustainable, state of the art headquarters in the town and allow CALA to bring 91 much needed homes to the area. CABI is an international not-for-profit organisation that improves people’s lives worldwide by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agr...

CABI scientists make first discovery of the Asian samurai wasp Trissolcus japonicus in Europe – the end of the stink bug invasion?

2 November 2018 - CABI scientists have made the first discovery of the Asian samurai wasp Trissolcus japonicus – a natural enemy that kills the eggs of the the invasive fruit and nut pest brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys) – in Europe. Judith Stahl, MSc, and Dr Tim Haye led an international team of researchers, including those from the University of Turin and the USDA Agricultural Research Service, who used DNA analysis to confirm the wasp – which is native to China, Japan and Korea...

CABI’s training of MSc students reaches new milestone

30 October 2018 - CABI’s training of Plant Protection MSc students at the Szent István University of Gödöllő in Hungary has reached a new landmark with the 10th course on research methods being delivered since its inception in 2010. Dr Stefan Toepfer, who holds an Adjunct Professorship at the university and works closely with Associate Professor Dr Márk Szalai as well as other scientists from the Plant Protection Institute of the university, has now helped train over 320 students in state-of-th...

Progress made on fall armyworm, but greater effort needed

29 October 2018 - A major new report published by CABI has revealed that losses due to fall armyworm are lower than projected in 2017 and the pest is still primarily focussed on maize rather than any other potential host crops. Better monitoring, swift responses by governments and farmers and an increase of natural enemies attacking the pest all help in mitigating the devastating crop losses it can cause. In the report, funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Ne...

CABI outlines at ABIM meeting the next steps to a global launch of its innovative Biopesticides Portal

29 October 2018 - Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, CABI’s Executive Director, Global Operations, has revealed at the Annual Biocontrol Industry Meeting (ABIM) the next steps to launching CABI’s innovative Biopesticides Portal to a worldwide market. Dr Kuhlmann told delegates, at the Congress Center Basel in Switzerland, that CABI is in the process of securing partnerships with biocontrol manufacturers, agro industries, and development cooperation agencies, before the service is expected to launch with full ...

Joint Laboratory celebrates a decade of research and development to help ensure global food security

23 October 2018 - The Joint Laboratory for Bio-safety (Joint Lab), established by CABI and the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA), is celebrating 10 years of collaborative research and development to address Chinese and global needs for food and nutritional security. A short ceremony to celebrate the 10th anniversary was held at CABI’s Asia-Pacific Regional Consultation on 18 October, with delegates being shown a commemorative video on what the Joint Lab has achieved, and ...

CABI study identifies safer options for fall armyworm control in Africa

22 October 2018 - CABI’s experts in the biological control of agricultural pests and diseases have conducted the first major study of potential biological controls that could be used in the fight against the devastating fall armyworm which recently arrived in Africa. The fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) attacks around 100 species of plant including rice, sorghum and sugarcane but favours maize. It has already started to cause substantial damage to staple crops grown by smallholder farmers ...

Stronger value chains and trade links high on agenda at CABI’s Asia-Pacific Regional Consultation

19 October 2018 - A focus on building capacity for stronger value chains and trade links, as part of the overall mission to improve global food security, was high on the agenda at CABI’s Asia-Pacific Regional Consultation held in Beijing, China. The meeting, hosted by the Chinese government through the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) and the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), was the opportunity for CABI’s member countries* and partners to hear how CABI is...

Reverse innovation brings new intelligence to food chain pest management

17 October 2018 - CABI has today launched PestSmart Diagnostics in Europe and North America, the first in a series of new and unique e-learning courses based on training developed for the award-winning Plantwise agricultural programme aimed at farmers in developing countries. PestSmart promises to benefit the way businesses in the food supply chain manage plant health problems to grow more and better produce. The course is unique in two ways: it is the first plant health e-learning product of ...

World Food Day: 'Feeding our Appetite for Food Security'

16 October 2018 - 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 demand. Our passion for food – beyond the need of it for our very survival – is engrained deeply in cultural practices and national identities around the world. The Americans are perhaps stereotypically renowned for wanting their food fast and lots of it, the Italians...

Brazilian government signs five-year deal to benefit from CABI’s scientific publications and databases

15 October 2018 - The Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES) has signed a five-year deal to benefit from CABI’s range of world-leading scientific publications and databases including CAB Abstracts – an online platform of more than 12 million records. CAPES, a Brazilian federal government agency under the Ministry of Education, is responsible for quality assurance in postgraduate courses with more than 200 institutions serving as members of the academic consortium. ...

CABI and IFPRI land prestigious $250,000 Inspire Challenge 2018 Scale Up award

10 October 2018 - CABI and partners the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) have landed a prestigious $250,000 Inspire 2018 Scale Up award for their ground-breaking ‘Seeing is Believing’ project which uses farmers’ own smartphone photographs to help them optimize their agronomic decision-making. The prize, which was won as part of CGIAR’s Platform for Big Data in Agriculture 2018 Inspire Challenge awards, was presented during the Platform’s second annual congress – Decoding the...

World’s leading source of news, views and analysis about science and technology joins The Trust Project

9 October 2018 - SciDev.Net – the world’s leading source of news on science for global development – has today joined The Trust Project’s aim of increasing transparency and trust in the news media. SciDev.Net is part of CABI – but operates editorially independently with its content overseen by an independent Editorial Advisory Group whose role is to ensure its editorial independence protocol is adhered to. The Trust Project is made up of  more than 120 news sites – including SciDev.Net and oth...

CABI unveils action plan to fight highly invasive and destructive weed

9 October 2018 - CABI has launched a comprehensive national action plan aimed at combatting the scourge of Parthenium, a highly invasive species of weed, prevalent and spreading in Pakistan. The comprehensive Parthenium Weed Management Action Plan was unveiled during a two-day workshop held in Islamabad on 8th and 9th October, 2018. The workshop’s main objectives were to share experiences and information on Parthenium weed’s presence and impacts in Pakistan, and draft an initial comprehensive ...

CABI signs MoU with Koppert to work together on sustainable controls to fight invasive pests and weeds

8 October 2018 - CABI has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with world-leading biological control specialists Koppert to collaborate on making more environmentally sustainable biological controls available in the fight against invasive pests and weeds in less developed countries. The agreement with Koppert – a worldwide leader in the research, development and production of biological control products for a range of invasive pests and weeds – includes working with the Koppert Foundation...

Kenyan farmers reap the benefits thanks to Plantwise plant clinics

1 October 2018 - CABI’s global Plantwise programme has a major impact helping farmers in Kenya grow more and lose less to crop pests and diseases, according to a new impact report published today. Research undertaken by the American Institutes for Research (AIR), funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and published today, shows that: Plantwise contributes to improvements on yields, crop-based household incomes and reductions in pesticide usage for farmers living in ...

PhD student steps up fight against western corn rootworm – a major pest of maize

27 September 2018 - A PhD student, supervised by CABI’s invasive species and maize production expert Dr Stefan Toepfer, is stepping up the fight against one of the most destructive pests of maize in North America and Europe – the western corn rootworm. Szabolcs Toth is conducting his research at the Plant Science Doctoral School of the Szent Istvan University of Gödöllö in Hungary together with CABI Switzerland, aiming to improve integrated control methods for the invasive alien pest. His inve...

Tunisian government benefits from world-leading database of applied life sciences

26 September 2018 - The Centre National Universitaire de Documentation Scientific et Technique (CNUDST) in Tunisia has become the latest to subscribe to CAB Direct , CABI’s online database platform, providing a single point of access to more than 12 million records. CNUDST, which is part of the Tunisian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, joins many of the premier universities and research centres from across the globe benefiting from the service which includes the very latest...

CABI welcomes Burundi’s Minister for Environment, Agriculture and Livestock and Ambassador to UK

21 September 2018 - CABI this week further strengthened relations with Burundi by welcoming its Minister for Environment, Agriculture and Livestock, His Excellency Dr Deo-Guide Rurema as well as the country’s Ambassador to the UK His Excellency Mr Ernest Ndabashinze. The distinguished guests were both met by Chief Commercial Officer Ms Carol McNamara, Dr Andrew Robinson, Managing Director, Publishing, Dr Qiaoqiao Zhang, Director, Memberships and Dr Rob Reeder, Plantwise Data Manager, at CABI’s ...

CABI scientists to co-organise the global biocontrol conference ICBC 2018 for non-chemical fights against insect pests

20 September 2018 - CABI scientists will co-organise, together with Society for Biocontrol Advancement (SBA), Bengaluru, the ICAR-National Bureau of Agricultural Insect Resources (NBAIR), Bengaluru and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), New Delhi - a meeting of the world’s leading biocontrol specialists at the 1st International Conference on Biological Control (ICBC 2018) which will take place in Bengaluru, India from 27-29 September 2018. The conference will consider a range o...

CABI Americas and Caribbean consultation focuses on the impact of invasive species on food security and trade

18 September 2018 - Some 60 delegates, including representatives from 12 CABI member countries, gathered in Ottawa, Canada for CABI’s Americas and Caribbean regional consultation meeting, where emerging issues around invasive species and food security were discussed. The meeting was the opportunity for member countries and partners to hear how CABI, is making progress against its Medium Term Strategy 2017-2019, particularly on five priority areas. These include: trade and market access, knowled...

CABI to share plant health expertise at TROPED 2018

13 September 2018 - CABI scientists Dr Julie Flood, Dr Jayne Crozier, Dr Sivapragasam Annamalai and Muhammad Faheem are to share their expertise on plant health and food security at the first international conference on Tropical Fruit Pests and Diseases (TROPED) which will take place in Malaysia from 25-27 September 2018. The International Tropical Fruits Network (TFNet), under the auspices of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), is organizing the conference at the...

Tiny mite could prove a ‘mighty’ weapon in the fight against one of the UK’s most invasive weeds

12 September 2018 - CABI scientists are stepping up the fight against one of the UK’s most invasive non-native aquatic weeds. Approval has been given for the release of a novel biological control agent – the mite, Aculus crassulae – to assess its ability in the real-world environment to suppress Australian swamp stonecrop (Crassula helmsii), also known as New Zealand pigmyweed. This follows carefully controlled laboratory testing to ensure the safe, controlled release of the mite in the UK. Th...

New Fall Armyworm Portal features as part of CABI’s upgraded Invasive Species Compendium

11 September 2018 - A new Fall Armyworm Portal, which includes the very latest reports and research regarding the devastating crop pest, now features as part of a major upgrade of CABI’s Invasive Species Compendium (ISC) launched today. The portal, created as part of the CABI-led Action on Invasives programme – funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the Netherland’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) – is now an integral part of the ISC, whi...

CABI calls for urgent action to tackle the global spread of invasive species

5 September 2018 - In response to the growing threat of invasive species, the Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI) has called for urgent action to tackle the global spread of invasive species, even as the recent fall armyworm outbreak casts doubts over Africa and Asia’s preparedness to fight the scourge. CABI is a not-for-profit organisation that draws on scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment. The call was made at the 2018 Africa Green ...

World-leading scientists to debate how best to tackle alien invasive plants which threaten human health and biodiversity across Europe

24 August 2018 - Some of the world’s leading scientists in the field of alien invasive plants are to debate how best to tackle the scourge of a range of alien invasive plants – some of whose pollen can cause severe irritation in humans and threaten native ecosystems. CABI is co-organising with the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, the XV International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds in Engelberg, Switzerland, which, on Thursday 30 August 2018, will include a panel of experts who wil...

Symposium to launch new book exploring gender equality and tourism

20 August 2018 - CABI and Equality in Tourism are holding a symposium, which will debate ways to increase gender equality in the tourism industry, to launch a new CABI book edited by Dr Stroma Cole entitled ‘Gender Equality in Tourism: Beyond Empowerment.’ An expert panel from academia, policy and industry will present examples of good practice which will then be followed by an audience discussion. The event will take place at Intrepid, 9 Brighton Terrace, Brixton, London, SW9 8DJ at 5pm on Thu...

CABI warns of rapid spread of crop-devastating fall armyworm across Asia

2 August 2018 – CABI scientists have today warned of the impending rapid spread of the crop-devastating pest, fall armyworm, across Asia following its arrival in India, with major crop losses expected unless urgent action is taken. The warning comes following a pest alert published this week by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) on the website of one of its bureaux, NBAIR, confirming the discovery of fall armyworm in the southern state of Karnataka. CABI scientists warned Asia wa...

Space-age technology for fight against crop-devastating pest outbreaks in Ghana

25 July 2018 - CABI is leading a consortium, funded by the UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Programme (IPP), developing a Pest Risk Information Service (PRISE), which uses state-of-the-art technology to help inform farmers in sub-Saharan Africa of pest outbreaks that could devastate their crops and livelihoods. The service was launched yesterday - Tuesday 24 July 2018 - at the British High Commission in Accra, Ghana. It also currently operates in Zambia and Kenya. PRISE builds upon ...

CABI welcomes Dr Andrew Robinson as new Managing Director, Publishing

25 July 2018 - CABI welcomes Dr Andrew Robinson as its new Managing Director, Publishing to lead and drive its Publishing and Knowledge Management activities and products. These include the world-renowned CAB Abstracts and Global Health as well as compendia, books, eBooks, full text resources and important open access resources such as the Plantwise Knowledge Bank and Invasive Species Compendium. Andy comes to CABI after serving as Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Society Services, ...

CABI works in partnership to help rid UNESCO Natural World Heritage site Socotra of common pest pear Opuntia stricta

24 July 2018 - Invasive species experts from CABI have been working in partnership with a range of international organisations, including more than 200 members of a local community and a musical band, to help get rid of the common pest pear Opuntia stricta from the Socotra Archipelago, Yemen. Dr Arne Witt, CABI’s Coordinator: Invasive Species, is providing guidance to the local UNEP/GEF team and in extension to the Environmental Protection Authority (Socotra branch), the Socotra Office for Agri...

New CAB Direct integration with ORCID helps authors identify and claim their publications

24 July 2018 – CABI is pleased to announce that its CAB Direct platform, a gateway to the most thorough and extensive source of reference in the applied life sciences, now supports ORCID, giving authors an easy way to identify and claim their publications. ORCID provides researchers with a personal, persistent identifier or iD, distinguishing each from every other researcher. The ORCID system is used globally and has over five million registered users. CAB Direct has over 12 million records an...

CABI signs LoA with African Union Commission

23 July 2018 - CABI has pledged its commitment to work in partnership with the Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture (DREA) of the African Union Commission (AUC) as part of a Letter of Agreement (LoA) to share its scientific expertise in solving problems in agriculture and the environment. The agreement, which was signed by CABI CEO Dr Trevor Nicholls and African Union Commissioner Josefa Sacko in the presence of Dr Dennis Rangi, CABI’s Director General-Development, Dr Morris Akiri, Regio...

Conserving and using genetic resources as part of CABI’s commitment to the Nagoya Protocol

17 July 2018 - CABI has stepped up measures to ensure its research with genetic resources from around the world can be shared with others to improve yields in global agriculture while at the same time supporting the conversation of biodiversity. CABI, in complying with the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) has created a team of CABI ABS ‘Champions’ in Europe, Africa, Asia and South America to liaise with host countries so CABI can carry out its work in compliance with local ne...

CABI welcomes Afghanistan as its 49th member country

16 July 2018 - Afghanistan, whose agricultural industry accounts for up to 40 percent of its gross domestic product, has been welcomed as the 49th member country of CABI. Dr Trevor Nicholls, CEO of CABI, confirmed signature of the UN-level Treaty on CAB International by the Government of Afghanistan to bring the country into membership of CABI to be administered through its Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock. Membership of CABI entitles national governments to a range of benefit...

Space-age technology for fight against crop-devastating pest outbreaks in Kenya

16 July 2018 - CABI is leading a consortium, funded by the UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Programme (IPP), developing a Pest Risk Information Service (PRISE), which uses state-of-the-art technology to help inform farmers in sub-Saharan Africa of pest outbreaks that could devastate their crops and livelihoods. The service is now being provided in Kenya after it was launched at a Plantwise plant clinic in Manyatta in Kenya’s Eastern Province. Plant clinics are a meeting place where ...

Fight against Fall armyworm in Kenya ‘mobilised’ with new government text messaging campaign

10 July 2018 - A new weapon in the fight against the Fall armyworm (FAW) caterpillar in Kenya is being launched giving thousands of smallholder farmers free expert help and advice on how to tackle the devastating pest through mobile SMS text messaging. Precision Agriculture for Development (PAD) has joined forces with the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation (MAI), the Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI), and Safaricom to provide the service, called ‘MoA-INFO’, to maiz...

SC Johnson provides support to help protect Carnaúba palm trees in Brazil

27 June 2018 - As part of SC Johnson’s efforts to protect natural resources for future generations, the company today announced it has provided a grant of 1.2 million Brazilian reals ($370,000) to CABI. The grant will help drive research in the management and control of the Devil’s claw vine (Cryptostegia madagascariensis), an exotic invasive weed that currently threatens the unique Caatinga ecosystem, including the native Carnaúba palm (Copernicia prunifera), in northeastern Brazil. “The aggre...

Exploring Fleming's Penicillium and the potential of microorganisms

19 June 2018 - On this day in 1906 the biochemist and Nobel laureate Ernst Chain, best known for his work in the synthetic production of penicillin, was born. To mark his birthday, and to highlight a fascinating exhibition on 'Superbugs', the Science Museum has today published a blog and video where CABI's Genetic Resource Collection Curator Dr Matthew Ryan explores Fleming's Penicillium and the potential of microorganisms. Filmed within CABI's National Culture Collection, Dr Ryan reveals that ...

New book launched at CABI symposium on tourism and animal welfare

14 June 2018 - A new book published by CABI – looking at the meaning of ‘animal welfare’ and its role in tourism, in relation to ethics, animal rights, and human obligations to animals,  – has been launched, with the authors Neil Carr and Donald Broom at this year’s CABI symposium on tourism and animal welfare. Donald Broom also took the opportunity to speak about ‘Sentience, Welfare, Ethics and Human Entertainment’ as one of seven speakers at the event held at London South Bank University (Wed...

CABI highlights importance of ICT in agriculture at First East Africa Digital Farmers Conference & Exhibition

5 June 2018 - CABI scientists and staff have been highlighting the important role technology can play in helping to secure global food security by sharing their expertise at the First East Africa Digital Farmers Conference & Exhibition in Nairobi, Kenya. As the world is faced with the challenge of feeding an estimated nine billion people by 2050, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) states that a 70 percent increase in food production will be required to meet th...

A night at the movies: with soybean and Fall armyworm as stars of the show

4 June 2018 - Farmers in northern Ghana are beginning to get a taste of the latest movie out of the Box Office – it’s not a romantic comedy or a thriller – instead it’s a production that will help them get more from their soybean crops and protect their maize from the Fall armyworm caterpillar. Tamsin Davis, the CABI communications specialist who produced the armyworm films being screened explained the role of film in supporting agricultural extension efforts: “Films let farmers see with their ...

Peruvian university taps into world-leading database of applied life sciences

4 June 2018 - The Universidad Científica del Sur in Peru has become the latest university to subscribe to CAB Abstracts – a world-leading database of more than 9 million records of applied life sciences including agriculture, environment, leisure/tourism, veterinary sciences, food science and nutrition. CAB Abstracts is the leading English-language bibliographic information service providing access to the world’s applied life sciences literature. It includes CABI Full Text, giving users automat...

CABI shares its expertise on biological control at international congress in Beijing, China

17 May 2018 - CABI scientists have shared their expertise on biological control methods to tackle a range of agricultural pests and diseases that threaten global food security at the First International Congress of Biological Control held in Beijing, China. The three-day event, which ran from 14 to 16 May 2018, was sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), the International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC) and the China Society of Plant Protection (CSPP), and b...

CABI donates books to prize-winning students at The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies

16 May 2018 - CABI has donated copies of the appropriately titled ‘Animal Welfare’ to students at The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies who were tasked with designing a poster to promote key themes relating to animal welfare. Copies of the CABI-published book, edited by Professor Michael Appleby of the University of Edinburgh of which The Royal (Dick) School is affiliated, were sent to Dr Andrew Gardiner, Senior Lecturer and EMS Director, to present to the winning group of students. Ta...

Project launched to strengthen vegetable value chains in Pakistan

16 May 2018 - CABI has launched a project to strengthen the value chains of four vegetables in Pakistan – thereby helping to boost the household incomes and livelihoods of thousands of smallholder farmers and their families. The project, which is funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), will not only look to help farmers produce healthy and profitable onion, potato, tomato and chili crops but will also primarily enhance the socioeconomic conditions of rur...

CABI promotes closer partnership with Southeast Asia at ASEAN London Committee

14 May 2018 - A delegation of representatives from CABI have promoted plans for closer partnership with countries in Southeast Asia as part of their presentation at the 2nd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) London Committee  meeting in 2018 held on Tuesday 9 May 2018. Representing CABI, Dr Qiaoqiao Zhang, Director of Memberships, and Phil Abrahams, Director of Strategic Business Development, were invited to the meeting by the current Chair of the ASEAN London Committee (ALC), His E...

CABI signs MoU with Agricultural Department Gilgit Baltistan to launch Plantwise program

9 May 2018 - CABI has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Agriculture Department Gilgit Baltistan in Pakistan to launch the Plantwise program in order to provide research-based advisory services to farmers. Plantwise is a global programme led by CABI, which works to help farmers lose less of what they grow to plant health problems. Working closely with national agricultural advisory services it establishes and supports sustainable networks of plant clinics, run by trained plant doct...

Multi-media campaign helps improve food security in Tanzania

8 May 2018 - A multi-media campaign has helped CABI and partner agencies in Tanzania improve food security in Tanzania by encouraging thousands of farmers to adopt improved legume technologies including ways to produce healthier and more profitable crops of common bean and soybean. The project was jointly led by Farm Radio International (FRI), the Africa Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) and CABI. It is funded by the International Development Research Centre and reached more than 6...

CABI helps train agricultural scientists of tomorrow as part of six-day course in Hungary

4 May 2018 - CABI has helped train the agricultural scientists of tomorrow by holding a course for MSc students and young researchers keen on learning more about research methodologies in agriculture, including plant protection, at the Szent Istvan University of Gödöllő in Hungary. Dr Stefan Toepfer, Research Scientist Arthropod Biological Control and Integrated Crop Management Advisor at CABI, helped enable 58 students – studying for an MSc in Plant Protection – learn more about study design, ...

CABI helps Pakistan’s cotton industry to reduce losses of around $350m a year

3 May 2018 - CABI is helping Pakistan’s cotton industry to reduce losses of around $350m a year through poor production, transport and storage practices by training thousands of farmers and workers as part of the Better Cotton Initiative. Cotton is Pakistan’s largest industrial sector and has played an important role in the economic development of the country and remains a key livelihood source for more than one million farmers. However, the misuse of pesticides and water, the inappropriate us...

Workshop explores structure and tree-damaging termites in the tropics

2 May 2018 - CABI scientists have held a successful three-day workshop exploring how to diagnose and manage termites associated with structures and trees in the tropics. The workshop, held at CABI’s South East Asia (SEA) office building at MARDI in Serdang, Malaysia, highlighted termites as ecologically important insects with significant roles to play as decomposers but also as pests that can cause major damage to trees and buildings. Dr Sivapragasam Annamalai, Regional Director of CABI SEA, o...

PhD student joins the fight against devastating Fall Armyworm pest

25 April 2018 - A new PhD student has joined the fight against the devastating Fall Armyworm pest. CABI predicts feeding damage by the caterpillars of this invasive alien insect will cost ten of Africa’s major maize producing economies $2.2bn to $5.5bn a year in lost maize harvests if it is not properly managed. CABI scientist Dr Stefan Toepfer, an expert in nematode-based biocontrol product development, is co-supervising Patrick Fallet who is studying novel ways of encapsulating and applying e...

Biological control specialist celebrates half a century in science at CABI

24 April 2018 - In the year that Riaz Mahmood started work as a biological control scientist at CABI in 1968, Apollo 8 was launched to begin the first US mission to orbit the Moon. Now in 2018, Mr Mahmood, a Senior Biological Control Specialist at CABI’s Centre for Central and West Asia (CWA) based in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, is celebrating half a century of loyal service. Mr Mahmood, a member of the Pakistan Society of Sugar Technologists and the Pakistan Entomological Society, was presented wit...

CABI signs MoU with Asian and Pacific Coconut Community

20 April 2018 - CABI has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Asian and Pacific Coconut Community (APCC) to share its scientific expertise in pest and disease control and management as part of the APCC’s work to coordinate and harmonise all activities of the coconut industry in the Asia and Pacific regions. The agreement to engage in technical cooperation was signed at CABI’s Malaysia office by CABI’s CEO Dr Trevor Nicholls and Mr Uron N. Salum, Executive Director of the Asian an...

CABI shares its expertise at the International Master Class in Plant Biosecurity in Indonesia

19 April 2018 - CABI has shared its expertise in biosecurity and its links to food security, trade and market access at the International Master Class (IMC) in Plant Biosecurity held in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia. Muhammad Faheem, Integrated Crop Management Advisor based at CABI’s Malaysia office, delivered a one-day course at the event where the Bilateral Plant Biosecurity Initiative (BPBI) between Indonesia and Australia pointed out the need for greater training and awareness of the national, ...

10th Steering Committee of China-CABI Joint Laboratory addresses green technology in agriculture

11 April 2018 – The 10th annual Steering Committee (SC) meeting of the Joint Laboratory for Bio-Safety of the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) and CABI has highlighted a broad commitment to environmentally-friendly technology in agriculture. The meeting, held at the Lvfulong Organic Farm in Yanqing, Beijing, China on 29 March, was the opportunity for officials and scientists from CABI and MARA to review the Joint Laboratory’s achievements and progress made in 2017 as wel...

Students learn Integrated Pest Management techniques in Beijing

10 April 2018 - CABI has held a five-day course on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to train post graduate students and young researchers on a range of pest management techniques including how to keep pests, diseases and weeds below levels that cause economic damage. The course, which was held at the Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Science (CAAS) in Beijing, China, was delivered by CABI’s IPM expert Dr Stefan Toepfer who is a visiting professor at the Institute of Plant P...

CABI to appoint former CEO of Taylor & Francis Group as Chair of the Board

9 April 2018 - Roger Horton, former CEO of the Taylor & Francis Group – one of the world’s largest academic publishers, is to be appointed as the new Chair of the Board at CABI at its meeting in June 2018. He will succeed Philip Walters MBE who is retiring from the Board having been a non-executive director of CABI for seven years, the last three as Chair. Mr Horton has served as a member of the CABI Board since July 2017 and brings a wealth of experience to the position including 14 years ...

CABI joins Koppert to reduce the reliance on chemical use in pest management in Kenya

29 March 2018 - CABI has initiated activities with Koppert Biological Systems to increase the fight against crop pests and diseases which threaten the food security and livelihoods of thousands of farmers and their families in Kenya. CABI has signed a collaboration agreement with Koppert to deliver more Plantwise plant doctor training in Kenya, with funding from the Koppert Foundation. This includes plans to further raise the awareness and promotion of biocontrol methods as part of integrated p...

New $400,000 Fall Armyworm Tech Prize launches

28 March 2018 - A new $400,000 African Food Security Prize to help find the latest technology to combat the devastating impacts of the fall armyworm, which attacks over 80 different plant species, has today launched. CABI will form part of the judging panel for the Fall Armyworm Tech Prize – which is being spearheaded by Feed the Future with financial support from Land O’Lakes International Development and the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research – and will test the winning entries befo...

SciDev.Net scoops honour for highlighting neglected tropical diseases

28 March 2018 - SciDev.Net has picked up a prestigious award from the International Society for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ISNTD) for numerous articles raising the awareness of a range of global health issues including malaria and elephantiasis. Anita Makri, a freelance editorial consultant at SciDev.Net - the world’s leading source of reliable and authoritative news, views and analysis about science and technology for global development, received the ISNTD Award for Written Work on behalf of...

Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann unveils Biopesticides Portal prototype at Biocontrol Africa conference

21 March 2018 – Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, CABI’s Executive Director Global Operations, has unveiled a prototype Biopesticides Portal that facilitates the identification, sourcing and application of more environmentally-friendly, cost-effective and sustainable biological control products in the global fights against agricultural pests and diseases. The CABI-led project was highlighted this week (20 March 2018) at the Biocontrol Africa conference in Nairobi, Kenya, as part of a presentation co-authored...

CABI joins international team of experts to develop a Global Surveillance System for crop diseases

20 March 2018 - CABI has joined an international team of experts in the field of agricultural science to develop a framework for Global Surveillance System (GSS) for crop diseases that could help ensure greater food security around the world. Dr Roger Day, Programme Executive for the recently launched UK Aid and DGIS funded Action on Invasives programme led by CABI, was one many scientists representing more than 15 international research and governmental organisations concerned with reducing th...

New cohort of students welcomed onto MAS in ICM course

12 March 2018 - Twelve new students are embarking on their Masters of Advanced Studies (MAS) in Integrated Crop Management (ICM) after attending a welcome ceremony in Delémont, the capital of the Swiss Canton of Jura. The course, which is coordinated by CABI and University of Neuchâtel, is being run for the fourth time and enables professionals in the field of agriculture and environment management to build upon their Master’s or Bachelor’s degree with practical experience in areas such as agri...

Initiative to bolster Pakistani agricultural exports goes global

12 March 2018 - An online sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) distance learning course, in which CABI has played a key role, is now globally available in English, Spanish and French through the Agrilinks website. The Food Safety Network (FSN) recently released the first three of 14 SPS online training courses on plant pest surveillance, plant pest identification systems, and plant pest inspections which were originally available in English and Urdu and launched in a project created to help bolster...

CABI projects feature in new STDF book 'Driving Safe Trade Solutions Worldwide'

8 March 2018 - Three CABI projects feature in a new Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF) book ‘Driving Safe Trade Solutions Worldwide’ which demonstrate how small-scale farmers, processors, traders and governments are being supported to access global markets. Of the 25 stories highlighted in the book, which was recently launched at STDF’s Policy Committee, the following CABI projects (part-funded by STDF) demonstrate impact across Asia and Africa: Driving knowledge on food safety ...

CABI trials PEAT's smartphone app Plantix that identifies plant pests in the field

8 March 2018 - CABI, through its Plantwise programme, is partnering with PEAT (Progressive Environmental & Agricultural Technologies) to conduct an 18-month pilot study to assess the benefits of a smartphone app called Plantix. The app gives extension workers and farmers an improved ability to identify economically-important insect pests, diseases and nutrient deficiencies and manage them in order to safeguard crops and livelihoods. Plantwise is a global programme led by CABI which works to...

CABI leads project to improve biosecurity in islands of the South Atlantic

7 March 2018 - CABI scientists will lead a two-year project to improve the biosecurity of a range of islands in the South Atlantic working closely with the UK Overseas Territories of St Helena and the Falkland Islands. The team, led by Dr Norbert Maczey, will in particular focus on the improvement of Pest Risk Assessment (PRA) procedures including the utilisation of a new Horizon Scanning Tool linked to CABI’s Crop Protection Compendium and Invasive Species Compendium. The £144,000 Darwin Plus...

Plans for strategic action to tackle invasive species in Africa advance

6 March 2018 - Plans towards developing a comprehensive strategy that will enable Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) to deal more proactively and effectively with invasive species have advanced significantly. This milestone has been achieved through a recently concluded workshop co-organised by the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe), the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and CABI, with support from the Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC). According to the ...

CABI launches invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool

6 March 2018 - CABI has announced the launch of its invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool (beta), a decision support aid to help users identify potential invasive species threats to a country, state or province. The tool is supported by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the UK Department for International Development (DFID). Gareth Richards, CABI’s Compendium Programme Manager, said, “Risk assessors, plant protection officers, quarantine officers, protected area managers and research...

CABI leads fight against fruit and nut pest

28 February 2018 - CABI’s expertise in scientific research and development is helping to lead the fight against a global pest which has already caused millions of dollars’ worth of damage to hazelnut crops in Georgia and apple production in north eastern regions of the USA. Dr Tim Haye, Head of Arthropod Biological Control at CABI, is leading a project in China – sponsored by Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada – to determine whether a natural solution can be found to control devastating impacts...

SciDev.Net honoured by Egyptian Government

20 February 2018 - SciDev.Net – the world’s leading source of reliable and authoritative news, views and analysis about science and technology for global development – has been honoured by the Egyptian Government for helping to found and support Egyptian Science Week. The Middle East & North Africa (MENA) edition of SciDev.Net received the award from the Egyptian Academy of Scientific Research and Technology as part of an event at Nile University, October City in Egypt, which launched Egypt...

CABI partners with ISEAL IPM Coalition to support farmers with pest and disease management

19 February 2018 - CABI has joined forces with the ISEAL Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Coalition in the fight to implement better, less chemical-dependent, ways for farmers to manage agricultural pests and diseases that account for around 40% of lost crops worldwide. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between both organizations. The IPM Integrated Pest Management Coalition is composed by ISEAL Alliance members: Better Cotton Initiative, Bonsucro, Fairtrade International, For...

Management of invasive plants could prevent spread of deadly malaria, scientists suggest

16 February 2018 - CABI scientists have joined an international team of experts who suggest that the large-scale management of a range of some invasive plants could hold the key to reducing the spread of deadly malaria. Dr Arne Witt and Dr Sean Murphy worked with scientists from the University of Illinois, The Ohio State University and the Fundación para el Estudio de Especies Invasivas (FuEDEI) in Argentina, to conduct a review of existing studies which looked at how mosquitoes are attracted t...

Global fight against invasive species tops agenda at CABI's 398th Executive Council Meeting

8 February 2018 - The fight against a myriad of invasive species, which costs the global economy around US$1.4 trillion each year, was top of the agenda at CABI’s 398th Executive Council meeting held yesterday (7 February 2018) at the Hallam Conference Centre in London. CABI CEO Dr Trevor Nicholls told the delegates, representing 36 CABI Member Countries, Board Members and CABI staff, that the organisation’s Action on Invasives programme is now in full flight and that the UK Department for Inte...

CABI strengthens collaborations with the International Tropical Fruits Network

29 January 2018 - CABI is strengthening its working relationship with the International Tropical Fruits Network (TFNet) with plans to further collaborate on projects related to the management of pests and diseases. CABI has been an Associate Member of TFNet since 2001 and previous collaborative work saw the development of the Malaysian Tropical Fruit Information System (MTFIS). It was recently agreed at a meeting at TFNet’s headquarters in Serdang, Malaysia, that the two organisations will: ...

China workshop raises awareness of Plantwise plant doctor programme

26 January 2018 - A workshop has been held at the Zhejiang Agriculture and Forestry University (ZAFU) in Hangzhou, Eastern China, to raise awareness of the Plantwise plant doctor programme which trains extension workers to diagnose and help farmers manage a range of crop pests and diseases. The meeting was primarily aimed at raising awareness among university students, private businesses and plant protection experts for participation in a plant doctor training and its certificate - presented to...

CABI receives JRS grant to publish dataset on invasive alien plants in Sub-Saharan Africa

25 January 2018 - CABI has received a grant of $45,750 from the JRS Biodiversity Foundation to publish one of the most complete and current datasets on Invasive Alien Plants (IAP) in Eastern Africa. The project, which is led by Dr Arne Witt, Coordinator: Invasive Species, CABI, will build upon the successful results from a previously awarded JRS grant. East Africa’s biodiversity is under threat from the spread of Invasive Alien Plants (IAP), which can have a dramatic impact on biodiversity, cro...

CABI briefs parliamentary group on invasive species and their impact on the SDGs

25 January 2018 - In a briefing to the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agriculture and Food for Development this week (23 January 2018), CABI highlighted the threat Fall Armyworm and other global invasive species pose towards achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). CABI’s CEO, Dr Trevor Nicholls, and Knowledge Bank Coordinator, East Africa, Dr MaryLucy Oronje, updated the meeting chaired by Lord Cameron of Dillington on the challenges presented by invasive species aroun...

CABI to improve the farming for 50 million poor households by tackling invasive species

22 January 2018 - Millions of the world's most vulnerable people face problems with invasive weeds, insects and plant diseases , which are out of control and have a major impact on global prosperity, communities and the environment. Developing countries are disproportionately affected. The global cost of the world’s 1.2 million invasive species is estimated at $1.4 trillion per year – close to 5 percent of global gross domestic product. In East Africa, five major invasive species alone cause $1 ...

Vegetable exports from Ghana resume after work to improve phytosanitary system

15 January 2018 - CABI’s work in partnership to improve Ghana’s phytosanitary systems means vegetable exports worth $15 million a year are continuing once again after the lifting of a Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety of the European Commission ban imposed in 2015. The lifting of the suspension, imposed due to concerns about the management of four quarantine pests including false codling moth, whitefly, thrips and fruit fly, means Ghana is exporting chili peppers, bottle gourds, lu...

CAB Direct wins CHOICE magazine ‘Outstanding Academic Title’ award 2017

3 January 2018 - The CAB Direct platform, which provides a single point of access to all of CABI’s databases, was rated as “highly recommended” for undergraduates, researchers, faculty members, technical programme students, professionals and practitioners in the March 2017 issue of CHOICE magazine. We are proud to announce that the platform has now won a CHOICE magazine ‘Outstanding Academic Title’ award 2017. CABI’s databases include CAB Abstracts (the leading English bibliographic information...

News from 2017.