The COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder that people everywhere need good nutrition to be resilient in the face of health threats and lead productive lives. For smallholder farming families and other vulnerable populations in low- and middle-income countries, nutrition deficiencies can be particularly debilitating, threatening these families’ health, livelihood, and ability to withstand shocks, including pandemics. Biofortified staple crops benefit the food supply chain, from the producers to the consumers — reducing the risk of being compromised by pandemics or other threats.
In Peru, the economic losses from foodborne diseases annually is estimated to be $500 million (USD). Peru is one of the few countries in the Americas categorized in the World Health Organization sub-region stratum “D,” with known high child and adult mortality resulting from foodborne disease. In late 2018, a group of researchers at Purdue University, led by Amanda Deering and Haley Oliver from the Food Science department, began a project aimed to improve food safety in the Arequipa region. The strategy used by the group has involved observations of in-farm practices by field workers to develop a relevant course on good agricultural practices that would help reduce the risk of microbial contamination.
Given that, globally, more than 2 billion people suffer from deficiencies in micronutrients that are essential for human health, there is a need to identify ways to scale the distribution and demand for nutrient-rich foods, particularly among low-income populations. The agricultural sector also plays a key role in the availability and affordability of naturally nutrient-rich foods that play an essential role in high-equality diets. However, the potential the agricultural sector to support the success of market-based approaches to nutrition, particularly in the promotion of a variety of naturally nutrient-rich foods, has been largely unexplored.
The GAP Initiative creates opportunities for Virginia Tech students to engage in the global agricultural and food security communities through our internship program. In this blog, hear from our two current interns on their personal journeys and how working with the GAP Report has impacted their understanding of agriculture. Megan: Hello, everyone! My name is […]
A recent report from the Supporters of Agricultural Research (SoAR) Foundation has found that investments in the CGIAR system yield a ten-to-one return on investment in low- and middle-income countries, with additional follow-on benefits impacting higher income and donor countries as well. Over the last 50 years of CGIAR’s operations, approximately $60 billion have been […]
Traditional rice farming techniques in India are becoming environmentally unsustainable. Direct Seeded Rice (DSR) is an alternative resource-efficient technology that minimizes the environmental impact of rice farming while improving farmer livelihoods. Corteva Agriscience’s integrated rice farming program helps farmers better understand and realize the benefits of DSR. Rice farming in Asia Rice is the staple food […]
The Mosaic Company is working to equip farmers with the tools to harness the fertility power of soil health. Through new products like the Sus-Terra Fertilizer and partnerships with BioConsortia, Sound Agriculture, and AgBiome, The Mosaic Company is forging a new future for fertilizer technology that enhances and utilizes soil’s natural ecological microbial biome. What […]
Deere & Company is not only working to improve productivity on the farm but also in the factory by bringing connectivity to rural America. Deere’s manufacturing facilities are very complex environments that rely heavily on internet connectivity and access. Advanced internet connectivity enables Deere & Company to fully embrace the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, […]