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CABI launches resource to promote use of safer bio products in farming

by Brand Voice
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From left: Dr. Ulrich Kuhlmann, Executive Director, Global Operations at CABI with Hon. Prof. Hamadi Boga, PS Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries and Dr. Morris Akiri, Regional Director, CABI Africa speaking at the BioProtection Portal launch press briefing

The CABI BioProtection Portal has been launched in Kenya as the pioneer country to help growers reduce reliance on chemical pesticides and produce safer and healthier food.

Nariobi, Kenya, February 2020 –The Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI) has today launched a free-to- use dedicated online resource aimed at raising awareness of environmentally friendly biocontrol and biopesticide products  and promoting their uptake by growers, their advisors and farmers.

The CABI BioProtection Portal will be available initially as an online website that can be used on smartphones, tablets and desktop computers, to help growers and pest management advisors identify, source and correctly apply biocontrol and biopesticide products for their specific crop-pest problems. An offline version will follow within the next weeks to enable growers in areas without reliable internet access to also benefit from the tool.

It is increasingly clear that certain kinds of chemical pesticides in agriculture are creating serious health and environmental effects. According to a 2018 annual report by the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS) there were pesticide residues in vegetable samples collected from various outlets and markets across Kenya. Ten percent of the sampled produce was found to have residue levels above the EU maximum allowable.

The portal which is predicted to become the go-to resource for identifying and sourcing biopesticides will be particularly beneficial for growers looking to replace chemical pesticides with biological products in order to meet market or export standards, satisfy consumer demands for healthier and safer food and reduce pressures on the environment.

After officially launching the portal, Hon. Prof. Hamadi Boga, PS Ministry of Agriculture Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperatives highlighted how the portal not just benefit growers but also national authorities responsible for the regulation/registration of plant protection products, private-sector decision-makers – such as cooperatives and organisations operating voluntary certification schemes – and biocontrol manufacturers looking to promote wider uptake of their products.

Speaking at the launch, Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, Executive Director, Global Operations at CABI said: “Globally, an estimated 40 percent of crops are lost to pests – such as the devastating maize pest fall armyworm and the tomato leaf miner – as well as a range of plant diseases.

The widespread use of chemical pesticides to fight crop pests alone is not sustainable either economically or environmentally in the long run especially when you factor impacts exacerbated by climate change.

“CABI is helping growers to adapt to this major challenge through projects that apply, among other things, our expertise in digital development and crop health as well as products like the BioProtection Portal which promote sustainable approaches to pest management.”

Users of the CABI BioProtection Portal will be able to enter their country and crop-pest problem query in the system and generate key information on biocontrol and biopesticide products that are authorised by national regulators for that specific search. Insights will be sourced directly from national governments’ list of registered pesticides and from partner biocontrol manufacturers.

Dr Morris Akiri, Regional Director for CABI Africa  said,  “The CABI BioProtection Portal brings together in one place the various safer and more environmentally friendly biocontrol and biopesticide products that growers can add to their ‘arsenal’ against crop pests as part of an integrated pest management plan.”

The portal will also be rolled out to a further 10-15 countries in 2020, including Spain, Brazil, Uganda and Bangladesh, and in multiple languages, with further countries to follow in 2021.

The innovative tool, has been made available by CABI in collaboration with its network of partner biocontrol manufacturers (Koppert Biological Systems, Syngenta and e-nema) and donors (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, African Development Bank and the UK Department for International Development) who provide invaluable support in the form of technical inputs, strategic guidance and funding.

The launch comes as CABI and its partners mark the inaugural International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) 2020 which aims to raise awareness of the importance and impacts of plant health in addressing world hunger, poverty, threats to the environment and economic development. As part of this effort, CABI is collaborating with Wageningen University to hold the first Plant Health, Agriculture & Bioscience Conference (PHAB 2020) which will be held on 9-11 September, 2020 in The Hague, the Netherlands.

Find out more information about the CABI BioProtection Portal from https://bioprotectionportal.com/

 

 

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Notes to editors

 

Media enquiries

 

David Onyango, Communications Specialist, CABI, Email: d.onyango@cabi.org

Tel: +254 (0)20 2271000/20

 

Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, Executive Director, Global Operations, CABI, Email: u.kuhlmann@cabi.org Tel: +41 (0)32 421 4882

 

Video

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXsIs1L3BQQ

 

 

Full list of collaborators

 

Partners

 

Koppert Biological Systems

Syngenta

e-nema

 

Donors

 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands

Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

African Development Bank

UK Department for International Development

 

National Supporting Institutions

 

Pest Control Products Board of Kenya

Agrochemicals Association of Kenya

Kenya Agriculture & Livestock Research Organisation

Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service

Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya

Agriculture and Food Authority of Kenya – Horticultural Crops Directorate

 

 

Associate Partners

 

Amiran

Dudutech

KAPI

Greenlife Crop Protection Africa

Kenya Biologics

Organix Limited

Osho Chemical Industries

Real IPM

Thika Wax Works

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About CABI

 

CABI is an international not-for-profit organization that improves people’s lives by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment.

 

Through knowledge sharing and science, CABI helps address issues of global concern such as improving global food security and safeguarding the environment. We do this by helping farmers

 

 

grow more and lose less of what they produce, combating threats to agriculture and the environment from pests and diseases, protecting biodiversity from invasive species, and

 

 

improving access to agricultural and environmental scientific knowledge. Our 49 member countries guide and influence our core areas of work, which include development and research projects, scientific publishing and microbial services.

 

 

 

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