The International Crops Research Institute of the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) held a four-day workshop, which began on Monday, June 21, with the aim of defining a plan for the development of crop varieties that take into account priority needs. Malian and gender-sensitive populations in West and Central Africa.

Have you ever thought of having peanut seeds that produce a lot more oil or millet and sorghum that is easy to pound? Or would you like a cereal to respect certain attributes of your choice? These needs will now be taken into account by ICRISAT researchers. Because, explains Dr Aboubacar Touré, sorghum breeder and representative of the Regional Director of ICRISAT, “ the workshop organized on Monday June 21, 2021, aims to develop profiles of cereal-legume products by bringing together the stakeholders in a representative manner. major crop sectors, as well as researchers from multidisciplinary teams from the public sector. 

Then reassures the researcher, “thanks to this workshop, a system for feedback and updating of product profiles will be designed and implemented. “

This system will facilitate, with each selection program, to continue to meet the emerging needs of the populations, in Mali and in all the countries of West and Central Africa, where approximately 7.3 million children suffered from malnutrition in 2019. , according to UNICEF.

So, to face this problem, ICRISAT joined forces with the Accelerated Varietal Improvement and Seed Supply of Legumes and Cereals in Africa (AVISA) project, to increase the productivity and profitability of farms. families, while strengthening their resilience to climate change.

These climatic disturbances make today, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the production of crops and animal husbandry difficult for Malian farmers and reduce food security.

Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, “ the breeding program therefore aims not only to improve demand-side and gender-sensitive crops, but also to tackle malnutrition and food insecurity in all countries. where ICRISAT works  , ”explains Dr Vabi Michael, socio-economist, representing Nigeria at the workshop.

This four-day workshop brought together traders, industrial processors, socio-economists, representatives of seed companies, breeders, gender specialists from several West African countries.

Some pictures of the workshop “Demand-driven and gender sensitive product profile development in West and Central Africa”

 

This story is originally published on Journal Scientifique et Technique du Mali: JSTM.

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