A battle is being waged in wheat fields across the world to stave off an impending calamity that can ravage global food security
By Sarosh Bana, Executive Editor of Business India magazine and EWCA Mumbai Chapter President
(Note: This article originally appeared in Business India magazine on April 1, 2013.)
South Asian countries, where wheat is a staple cereal for many, is vulnerably poised in the path of an exceptionally virulent fungus that can wipe out entire farmlands.
Farmers and agriculturist scientists in the region are hunkering down to fortify themselves against this peril that can undermine the food security of millions.
More than 20 wheat scientists from five South Asian countries – India, Nepal, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bhutan – participated last fortnight in a comprehensive training programme in Kathmandu on wheat rust monitoring and disease management.
Designed to raise a new generation of agro-scientists equipped to identify the more virulent stem, leaf and yellow rusts that can devastate entire farmlands and to create wheat strains that can withstand this scourge, the 2013 SAARC Wheat Rust Surveillance Workshop and Training Programme was the fourth such annual event to be held in South Asia. It was organised by the Durable Rust Resistance in Wheat (DRRW) Project, managed by the US’s Cornell University. Continue Reading »