In the Media

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In the Media

StrigAway Puts a Hex on Witchweed

Striga, also known as witchweed, is a parasitic weed that infests up to 50 million hectares of sub-Saharan African land. In Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda alone, striga infests over one million hectares of farmland. The weed causes farmers to lose anywhere from a third to one hundred percent of their staple crops, leading to hunger and financial hardship for as many as 100 million people. Traditional approaches to controlling Striga include crop rotation, intercropping, and various other planting techniques.

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Striga weed affecting production in Western Kenya

Striga or witch weed remains the biggest threat to food security in western Kenya, and to make matters worse, the witch weed is now spreading to highland areas like Kisii and Nyamira counties, according to experts.

Caleb Adede, the project officer of African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) however says all is not lost following the introduction of maize varieties resistant to the lethal weed.

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Scientists battle striga

Scientists in the region are battling Striga (witchweed) that has affected the productivity of staple foods such as maize, sorghum, millet and rice in the eastern part of the country.  

The most affected areas are mainly, Tororo, Moyo, Bugiri, Busia, Budaka and Iganga.

Farmers bordering Uganda on Kenyan side and Tanzania have also been affected by the Striga weed. Seed systems manager of African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF), Dr. Gospel Omanya said that over 100,000 hectares of land has been affected by the striga weed in Uganda.

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New initiative to upscale commercialisation of anti-striga weed in maize technology launched

Written by Raymond Gichuki

A new initiative has been launched to upscale use of commercialisation of StrigAwayTM – an herbicide-resistant seed and treatment – to improve productivity and competitiveness of smallholder maize farmers.

The initiative funded by the USAID brings together the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) and Feed the Future Partnering for Innovation through a programme

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Weed resistant maize variety developed

By Dennis Onyango

Siaya, Kenya: She smiles confidently as she guides her visitors on a tour of her one acre-piece of land.
Unlike many farms in West Ugenya Location, Siaya County, Jane Akinyi’s maize crop is healthy despite the havoc wrecked by the infamous striga weed.

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Food supply threatened by invasive weed

Researchers have raised the alarm over weed that could reduce maize yield by half, threatening the country’s food supply.

They said the Striga weed had been detected in Rift Valley — the country’s food basket — and its effects could be devastating.

Dr Fred Kanampiu, an agronomist at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre said the weed also spread fast and could destroy large swathes of land under maize.

Billions lost

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Tanseed produces witch weed resistant seeds

Tanseed International Limited has introduced maize seed varieties that can help in destroying witch weeds that have been affecting the production of more than 1.7 tonnes of maize throughout the country every year.

Tanseed Director, Mr Isaka Mashauri told ‘Daily News’ during Nanenane exhibition at Eastern Zone (J.K Nyerere Grounds) that his seed company is working hard in conducting research which will enable them coming up with seeds that will suit the Tanzanian environment.

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Varsity researchers win war on "Striga" weed with hybrid maize varieties

The development of three hybrid maize varieties and one for finger millet by a Maseno University don could offer the solution to massive crop failure as a result of Striga weed.

Led by Prof Mathews Dida, lecturers from the university have developed Maseno EH10, EH11 and EH14 maize varieties, which emit a natural chemical component that suppresses growth of Striga weed in a maize farm.

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African farmers lose $1.2b to deadly “Striga” parasite - IITA

IBADAN - African farmers incur losses amounting to 1.2 billion dollars yearly due to the activities of a parasite known as “Striga” on their crops, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, has said.

In a statement made available to newsmen in Ibadan, the Institute further noted that farmers regularly lost 40 per cent to 100 per cent of their crops because of this parasite.

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African farmers lose $1.2b to deadly “Striga” parasite - IITA

IBADAN - African farmers incur losses amounting to 1.2 billion dollars yearly due to the activities of a parasite known as “Striga” on their crops, the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, has said.

In a statement made available to newsmen in Ibadan, the Institute further noted that farmers regularly lost 40 per cent to 100 per cent of their crops because of this parasite.

English

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