International Agricultural Development

Will Transitioning From Public to Private for Overseas Aid Work?

Inspired after reading "The Coming Famine," Anthony Leddin, an Australian plant breeder, set out to make a difference. Plant Breeders Without Borders encourages plant breeders and...

Soybean Helps Rebuild Nigeria Post Conflict

Since 2012, violence inflicted by Boko Haram and other extremists has uprooted tens of thousands of Nigerians from their communities. Entire villages abandoned. Bridges bombed. Churches burned. Crops and...

Technology Adoption: A Catch-22

In preparation for planting African evaluation trials, Kristin Bilyeu works to increase 200 soybean lines under the Mississippi sun. Developing adaptable high yielding varieties for the low-latitude tropics is...

Roy Cantrell on Meeting Norman Borlaug and Training the Next Generation of Hunger-Fighters

Roy Cantrell is a Florida-based plant breeding consultant with a long history working to feed the world. He's also a mentor for the Borlaug Scholars program. We chatted with...

For Katelyn Fritz, it’s all About Passion

Borlaug Scholar Katelyn Fritz is an undergraduate from Iowa State University double majoring in agronomy and global resource systems with focus areas in plant breeding and biotechnology as well...

The View From an Agroecologist’s Back Porch

If I’m a smallholder farmer in sub-Saharan Africa, what questions or fears might cloud the merits of adopting soybean, a “darling” crop for development in the region? “I’ve never even...

Value Chain Perspective

Value chains are intricate and complex. No question. Seed can be fitted into value chain considerations at many points. The role of seed in one value chain often may...

A Transforming Resource

Vegetable seed can be transformative, having inherent capacity to beget an abundant supply of fresh nutritious life-sustaining vegetables. Vegetable seeds can readily serve as a practical platform to launch...

Exposure: The Common Thread

Peruvian born Juan Marroquin, nicknamed “J.J.”, landed a job in California as a melon breeder with international HM. Clause Inc. – Group Limagrain. He was simply elated. Truly he...

Not All Benefits Relate to the Bottom Line

In a Bangladeshi village, Loretta Byrnes hosts a group of female farmers to teach them about improved rice planting techniques, but what she learned from them might prove more...

Seed Cucumber or Sea Cucumber?

It started with misunderstanding. Was the discussion about a seed cucumber business or Sea Cucumber business? I’d known the participants for a while and always found them to be...

Faith Based and Seed Focused

“I see incorporation of seed as an investment in capacity building, allowing our international partners to enhance their own skills and programs focused on food security and ultimately economic...

Moving Beyond Subsistence

Possessing the only motored bicycle in his community in 2006, George Awuni found himself functioning as an ambulance carrying sick people to the hospital, even though he worked for...

Scaling Up is the Challenge

Nestled up in the northwest corner of Ghana, is an entrepreneurial group of female farmers keen on gaining skills, generating revenue and reputations as Quality Seed producers. Several kilometers...

Importing: A Vegetable Seed Dilemma

Vegetable seed production in lesser-developed countries yields tough challenges and is often viewed as an untenable risk. Yet, there’s a local need and desire for high-quality seed. Local, regional and...

Unheralded Contributions

Born into a humble family in central Pakistan is Fawad Shah, who is now an integral part of the U.S. seed industry, but he seeks out ways to contribute...

Same Goal, Different Pathways

Last fall, three African soybean breeders visited the University of Missouri and University of Illinois, in collaboration with the U.S. Soybean Innovation Lab (SIL), to observe advanced plant breeding...

The Not-So-Common Bean

The bean plays a crucial, and often overlooked, role in global agriculture. The common dry bean, Phaseolus vulgaris, is a staple crop of worldwide preeminence. In 1996, the International Center for...

Why the Brexit Vote Result has UK Scientists Terrified

Brexit — the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union — is raising urgent questions for the future of the UK. Among the many communities gobsmacked by Thursday night’s voting...

She Just Laughed

The Ghanaian woman farmer simply laughed at any thought of switching her soy plot with that of her husband’s maize plot for the next planting season. Neither questioning nor...