Hybrid Swarm: A Threat to Food Security in South America

By Charlotte Day.

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Helicoverpa zea larvae in corn (© Whitney Cranshaw, Bugwood.org).

Australian scientists have published findings confirming the hybridisation of two of the world’s most invasive agro-pests into a more advanced ‘mega-pest’.

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Invasive species in rubbish dumps: A new challenge for waste management practices?

By Dr Pablo L. Plaza, Dr Karina L. Speziale, and Dr Sergio A. Lambertucci

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In the current global climate of excess waste production around the world, there is great concern about how waste and dump sites could be a global problem, especially because the amount of global waste is only set to increase in the near future. At the moment, 3 million tonnes of waste is discarded around the world every day and by 2025, that total is expected to double.

Air pollution and contamination of water corps and soil with a range of toxins are common problems associated with the management of dump sites. Added to this is the presence of infectious pathogens in these sites, which can cause disease outbreaks for the communities living near to a rubbish dump site and even those in more distant areas.

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New challenge prize aims to tackle fall armyworm in Africa

t47a98271.jpgA new challenge 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 before they are implemented in the field.

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Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann unveils Biopesticides Portal prototype at Biocontrol Africa conference

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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 by Dr Steve Edgington, Dr Melanie Bateman and Dr Emma Jenner.

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

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The international team of experts at the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center (Photo: CIAT)

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 Action on Invasives programme led by CABI, was of one many scientists representing more than 15 international research and governmental organisations concerned with reducing the global burden of crop diseases by informing, preparing and enabling response plans for a more food-secure future.

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Plans for strategic action to tackle invasive species in Africa advance

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CABI speakers at the recent Tackling Invasive Species in Africa Workshop in Nairobi.
Left to right: Dr Roger Day (Programme Executive, Invasive Species), Dr Dennis Rangi (Director General, International Development), and Dr Arne Witt (Coordinator, Invasive Species Management)

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).

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A new tool to identify potential invasive species threats

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CABI has announced the beta launch of its invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool, 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 researchers will find that the invasive species Horizon Scanning Tool provides a quick and user-friendly means of accessing a large volume of relevant data for categorizing and prioritizing potential invasive species.”

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