CIMMYT Annual Report 2012: Agricultural research for development improves food security

Posted by Carelia Juarez on , in CIMMYT Publications

CIMMYT Annual Report 2012: Agricultural research for development improves food security. 2013. CIMMYT, Int.. : 28 p.. Mexico, DF (Mexico). CIMMYT. Series: CIMMYT Annual Report.

98208.pdfThe work of CIMMYT and its many valued partners on maize and wheat farming systems is more  important now than at any time in the organization’s history. Our planet’s expanding population,  changing diets, limited natural resources, demand for bio-fuels and increasingly variable climate  are all putting extraordinary pressure on the global food system. The evidence is all around us. In  2012, for the third time in less than six years, we faced a global food price crisis with international  maize prices reaching levels double those of just two years prior. In the wake of the Arab Spring,  two major wheat production and cereal importing areas, North Africa and the Middle East, remain  highly stressed by rising wheat prices. In recent years average wheat imports for all of Africa have  reached more than 35 million tons annually, costing the continent’s nations more than US$12 billion and threatening the supply of wheat products for resource-poor consumers.

Doubled haploid technology in maize breeding: theory and practice

Posted by Jose Juan Caballero on , in CIMMYT Publications

Prasanna, B.M.;  Vijay Chaikam and George Mahuku

Abstract: This manual is primarily intended for maize breeders in the national agricultural research systems (NARS) and small and medium enterprise (SME) seed companies in the developing countries  who would like to better underst and utilizes the doubled haploid (DH) technology in breeding programs. It is a compilation and consolidation of knowledge accumulated through scientific contributions of several maize geneticists and breeders worldwide as well as protocols successfully developed (in collaboration with University of Hohenheim, Germany) and being used by the CIMMYT Global Maize Program in DH line development, especially in Mexico. An overview of the utility and applications of DH technology in maize breeding is presented first in the Manual, followed by Chapters on in vivo maternal haploid induction using haploid inducers, haploid kernel detection using anthocyanin markers, chromosome doubling of haploids, deriving DH seed from colchicine‐treated plants, DH in commercial maize breeding, integrating molecular markers in DH‐based breeding pipeline, and finally, access to tropicalized haploid inducers and DH service from CIMMYT.

New CIMMYT Publications: Mass Rearing of Stem Borers, Maize Weevil, and Larger Grain Borer Insect Pests of Maize

Posted by Jose Juan Caballero on , in CIMMYT Publications


Tadele Tefera, Stephen Mugo, Regina Tende and Paddy Likhayo 


 ISBN: 978-92-9059-285-3  


Maize ( Zea mays L.) is important for agriculture and livelihoods in eastern and southern Africa as it is the major staple food. However, maize yield in Africa is very low, 1.5 t/ha, against a global average of 4.9 t/ha. Constraints to maize production include both abiotic and biotic factors. Among the biotic constraints in maize production, are insect pests in the field and in storage. The most economically important insect pests of maize in Africa include stem borer in the field, and both the maize weevil (MW) and larger grain borer (LGB) in storage (post-harvest pests). Maize plants are less able to tolerate stem borer attack than sorghum and pearl millet plants because they do not produce tillers, and the effect on grain yield is therefore greater. Colonization of the plant by borers, severity of infestation and damage strongly depend on the cropping system, soil fertility, and environmental conditions, which affect the nutritional status of the plant. Stem borer damage is aggravated by the poor nutritional status of the plant. Studies on several stem borers species in Africa showed that an increase in nitrogen is related to higher pest loads and tunnel damage. However, soil nutrient levels, such as nitrogen, also greatly influenced the plant’s tolerance to stem borer attack. This is due to an increase in plant vigor, which is reflected in lower yield losses (Setamu et al. 1995). Damage caused by stem borers can average 20 to 40%, which means between two to four bags of maize are lost out of every 10 that could be harvested (De Groote et al. 2003).    


New CIMMYT Publications: The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) Greenseeker TM Handheld sensor – Toward the integrated evaluation of crop management — Part A — Concepts and case studies

Posted by Jose Juan Caballero on , in CIMMYT Publications

Bram Govaerts, Nele Verhulst    

 A. Plant reflectance and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) 
 Reflectance is the ratio of energy that is reflected from an object to the energy incident on the object. Spectral reflectance of a crop differs considerably in the near infrared region (λ = 700-1300 nm) and in the visible red range (λ = 550-700 nm) of the electromagnetic spectrum.

New CIMMYT Publications: Maize for Asia – Emerging Trends and Technologies. Proceedings of the 10th Asian Regional Maize Workshop; Makassar, Indonesia; October 20-23, 2008

Posted by Jose Juan Caballero on , in CIMMYT Publications

Editor in Chief
Pervez H. Zaidi, Mohammad Azrai, and Kevin Pixley
ISBN: 978-979-1159-41-8
Abstract: This is proceeding of the 10th Asian Regional Maize
Workshop held in Makassar, Indonesia during 20 – 23 October 2008, and co-organized by International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Mexico and The Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development (IAARD), Indonesia.
The theme of the workshop was “Maize for Asia: Emerging Trends and Technologies”. The 10th ARMW brought together in Makassar, Indonesia, over 300 maize scientists, researchers and students from public and private sectors, including participants from China, Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, India, Iran, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos, Australia, Kenya and Mexico.  The workshop had 65 oral and 108 poster presentations, and included  invited lectures, research paper presentations, scientific deliberations  and discussions on maize in Asia. Papers of the proceeding deals with molecular tools, for maize improvement, genetics and breeding, crop management, biotic and Abiotic stresses affecting maize, technology dissemination and country reports.

New CIMMYT publication: Wheat Facts and Futures 2009

Posted by Petr Kosina on , in CIMMYT Publications

Dixon, John ; Braun, Hans-Joachim ; Kosina, Petr ; Crouch, Jonathan (2009). Wheat Facts and Futures 2009. CIMMYT. Mexico.

wwff For nearly half a century, the international wheat breeding system has delivered improved high yielding varieties of wheat that created (along with rice) the Green Revolution and underpinned strong growth in wheat productivity in irrigated and rainfed, developed and underdeveloped, regions. Future priorities for breeding and complementary sciences will still include yield but will also diversify in response to changing market demands and growing environments, particulary in developing countries. It is argued that in the coming decades research on wheat quality characteristics will become increasingly important to plant breeders, whose work will be supported by the development of markers and advanced tools from molecular biology. Breeders will have to contend with increased heat stress and variability stemming from climate change, which is expected to create regional winners, as the northern high latitudes grow warmer and moister, and losers, as the sub-tropics and tropics increasingly suffer from heat stress and drought. Yield response of improved varieties in farmers’ fields depends to a very great degree on sustainable systems management, which also is essential to reverse the ongoing degradation of agricultural resources. Finally, the importance of expanding the systems lens from farmers to policy makers, and of linking farmers, commerce, science, and policy is illustrated for the rice-wheat farming systems of South Asia.

New CIMMYT publication: An analysis of the bottlenecks affecting the production and deployment of maize seed in eastern and southern Africa.

Posted by Petr Kosina on , in CIMMYT Publications


Langyintuo, A.S.,W. Mwangi, A.O. Diallo, J.MacRobert, J. Dixon, and M. Bänziger. 2008. An analysis of the bottlenecks affecting the production and deployment of maize seed in eastern and southern Africa. Harare, Zimbabwe, CIMMYT.


Abstract: The publication describes outcomes of a study conducted in 2007/08 to analyze the bottlenecks affecting the production and deployment of maize seed in eastern and southern Africa. The objectives of the study were to provide a better understanding of the factors limiting the production and deployment of improved maize seed in Africa, and to contribute to increasing the efficiency of variety release, seed production and seed dissemination for new drought tolerant maize varieties. The study identified a number of institutional bottlenecks affecting the maize seed value chain, in particular in the area of policy, credit availability, seed production, germplasm and marketing. To address these bottlenecks and improve the efficiency of seed production and deployment to African farmers, the authors recommended a coordinated effort from policy makers, private and public organizations and farmers. The study was supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.