Seeking climate-smart strategies for root, tuber and banana crops in central Africa

Fresh Common Potato
Fresh Banana
Published Sep 23, 2021

Tridge summary

Root, tuber and banana (RT&B) crops are widely cultivated across the landscapes of sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). These staple food crops play a fundamental role in smallholder farming systems due to their good economic value and high importance within the daily diets of most households. The extensive planting of RT&B crops highlights their adaptive nature, but a team of researchers has identified a need to obtain more specific knowledge on how RT&B crops might respond to long-term changes in climate. Will this resiliency change? Will growing patterns be drastically altered? Given the importance of RT&B crops, significant shifts in the crop performance as a result of climate-induced changes in suitability would have serious implications for food security across SSA.

Original content

Researchers focused their study, recently published in Elsevier's journal Agricultural Systems, on banana, cassava, potato, and sweet potato cropping within the Great Lakes Region (GLR) of Central-East Africa—an area that is bordered by the countries of Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda. The study was a collaborative effort of modeling and crop scientists representing the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, International Potato Center, CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security, International Livestock Research Institute, CGIAR Research Program on Roots, Tubers and Bananas, Bioversity International, and the African Plant Nutrition Institute.The study used a crop suitability model that analyzed and mapped crop growth under both a historical climatic baseline and a future projection of average climatic conditions influenced by the impacts of greenhouse gas emissions. Researchers ...
Source: Phys
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