The most extreme drought in 115 years strongly affects food production in Cuba

The 2015 ongoing drought in Cuba has now severely affected about 87 000 tons of country's year rice production, the Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG) stated on December 14, 2015. The drought conditions of this year have now been regarded as the worst over the last...

December 18, 2015

EU's GMO revolution: More than half of EU member states opt out of GM crop usage

In the US, farmers have been cultivating GMOs since the 1990s and their consumption is by today widespread across the country. In the EU, on the other hand, usage of GMOs has taken a revolutionary turn after a directive passed in April 2015, which now allows EU...

November 30, 2015

Northern China facing soil drying issues: Increased farming activities a leading cause

Newly published research, investigating the relationship between increased food production and soil drying issues in northern China, suggest the increase in agricultural activities may be responsible for the strong decreasing trends of soil moisture. The research sugges

July 23, 2015

Continued destruction of Earth’s plant life places humankind in jeopardy

If humans continue destroying plants at the current pace, the lack of irreplaceable biomass may soon endanger present human civilization and make it unsustainable - according to a paper published recently by University of Georgia researchers in the Proceedings of the Na

July 17, 2015

Humanity rapidly depleting one third of Earth's largest aquifers

In two new studies led by the University of California, Irvine (UCI), scientists mapped 37 of the world's largest underground basins using NASA's Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites and concludes that humanity is rapidly depleting one

July 12, 2015

North Korea hit by the worst drought in a century

North Korea is facing its worst drought in a century, according to state media. South Hwanghae, North Hwanghae, South Pyongan and South Hamgyong, the country's main rice growing provinces are already heavily affected, and the fear of food shortages is increasing.&qu

June 18, 2015

Satellite mapping reveals agricultural slowdown in Latin America

For the first time, satellite mapping of Latin America shows that the continent's agricultural expansion has waned in the wake of the global economic downturn, according to UBC research."Nearly every agricultural region across Latin America slowed down in

May 14, 2015

United Nations urged to ensure open plant genomes

A plant scientist from The Australian National University (ANU) has called for the United Nations to guarantee free and open access to plant DNA sequences to enable scientists to continue work to sustainably intensify world food production. Dr Norman Warthmann, a plant

March 23, 2015

Can organic crops compete with industrial agriculture?

A systematic overview of more than 100 studies comparing organic and conventional farming finds that the crop yields of organic agriculture are higher than previously thought. The study, conducted by UC Berkeley researchers, also found that certain practices could furth

January 16, 2015

Agricultural practices play a big role in seasonal swings of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere

New study from Boston University, the University of Michigan and other institutions identifies a new, direct fingerprint of human activity on Earth as agricultural crops play a big role in seasonal swings of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.Modern agricultural

November 25, 2014

World is losing 2 000 hectares of farm soil daily to salt damage

Salt-spoiled soils worldwide: 20% of all irrigated lands — an area equal to size of France. Extensive costs include $27 billion+ in lost crop value/year. UNU study identifies ways to reverse damage, says every hectare needed to feed world’s fast-growing popu

October 28, 2014

Open Source Seed Initiative aims to keep seeds free from patents

In a public ceremony on April 16, a coalition of farmers, scientists and sustainable food advocates launched the Open Source Seed Pledge, a parallel licensing system designed to keep seeds in the hands of the public and prevent them from being patented by private intere

May 04, 2014

Sri Lanka bans glyphosate herbicide to avoid kidney disease risk

Sri Lanka, the large island south of India, is home to more than 20 million people who are now saying "no" to Monsanto's Roundup. Sri Lanka's president has suddenly issued a ban on glyphosate herbicide, as new studies suggest that the chemical is a

March 18, 2014

Industrial agriculture has reached its 'peak,' say scientists; time for a return to small-scale organics

The era of large-scale monoculture, with all of its toxic pesticides and untested genetically modified organisms (GMOs), could finally be coming to an end. Researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) discovered recently that yield expansion rates for most

January 24, 2014

Researcher says extensive use of antibiotics in agriculture creating public health crisis

University of Calgary's Aidan Hollis advocates user fees on non-human antibiotics use Citing an overabundance in the use of antibiotics by the agriculture and aquaculture industries that poses a threat to public health, economics professor Aidan Hollis has

December 30, 2013

Seed diversity has collapsed more than 12-fold since early 1900s

From the looks of an average produce section in a typical American supermarket, it might seem like modern society has access to basically every major type of fruit, vegetable and herb one could want. But a survey conducted by the U.S. National Seed Storage Laboratory

December 07, 2013

How vertical farming can change the world

If there weren’t any pesky practical limitations, what world-changing device would you invent? In the second installment of Babelgum and GOOD’s new Big Ideas competition, Columbia professor Dickson Despommier imagines filling New Yorks skyscrapers with

September 22, 2013