Tag: BBSRC

Boosting breeding of carbohydrate heavyweight cassava

CassavaUK crop researchers could boost yields of a vitally important global food crop by going back to its wild relatives to find new sources of disease resistance.

Cassava (Manihot esculenta) is an important staple for over 500 million people worldwide, grown for food and known in its dried form as tapioca, as animal feed and as a fuel source. The crop’s importance is set to grow with changing climates, but so too will threats from a number of pests and diseases which can devastate yield.

Driving out blight with dual control

Combining methods of disease control rather than relying on a single resistance strategy can extend the durability of crops by many years, confirms computer modelling that draws on classical population genetics theory.

Leading scientists call for unified approach to plant and animal breeding

Unifying the approaches to plant and animal breeding through the use of genomic selection is crucial to achieving global food security, according to a team of world leading scientists.

In a paper published this week in the international journal Nature Genetics, scientists from NIAB, the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) assert that global collaboration and investment across the two disciplines is central to increasing agricultural productivity and resilience.

Crop protection research secured at Rothamsted

© Rothamsted ResearchRothamsted Research has secured government funding to kick-start its new five-year strategic programme, Smart Crop Protection (SCP), to control sustainably the pests, pathogens and weeds that destroy nearly a third of crops grown worldwide. The investment of circa £6.3 million covers the programme’s first three years.

New training body to support £20 bn UK food industry

A new industry-level food training body launched today will tackle key questions facing the future of farming and the food business.

The AgriFood Training Partnership will combine the complimentary skills and knowledge of six university partners who are internationally recognised leaders in agrifood research and training. The partnership will offer more than 150 courses and workshops in all areas of agricultural production, environmental protection, food manufacture, scientific research and development and associated business and transferable skills.

Cutting-edge research points the way to canker resistant parsnip varieties

Studies carried out by Warwick University‘s Dr Lauren Chappell, now an Elsoms plant pathologist, have identified the three main pathogens responsible for parsnip canker, providing a secure platform for the development of disease-resistant lines. Elsoms, a global leader in parsnip breeding, is investing heavily in research, state-of-the art breeding techniques and seed production to bring UK growers the very best varieties.