Tanzania and U.S. Universities Host International Agricultural Conference

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Tanzania and U.S. Universities Host International Agricultural Conference

Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) and the U.S.-based Ohio State University (OSU) are hosting a three-day international conference in Tanzania that will bring together 100 scientists and agribusiness experts from around the world.

A press release from the Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI), that is spearheading this initiative, indicates that the conference, “Climate Change and Multi-Dimensional Sustainability in African Agriculture” will be held at the Hilux Hotel in Morogoro from June 3rd to 5th, 2015. The conference is funded primarily by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), with additional support from the United Nation’s Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), and the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU).

During the three-day conference, the experts are expected to deliberate on a number of topics related to climate change that affect the sustainability of African agriculture. The topics include multi-dimensional sustainability, soil fertility, value chains, genetic resources, conservation agriculture, water management, agricultural research for sustainability, land rehabilitation, agricultural risk and insurance, private sector solutions for sustainability, extension systems for agricultural sustainability, landscape approaches, and international, national and local policies for agricultural sustainability.

According to iAGRI’s Project Director Professor David Kraybill, apart from the organizers and the sponsors, participants will come from various institutions, such as Tanzania’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives, Mikocheni Agricultural Research Institute, Kizimbani Agricultural Training Institute, Tanseed International, Bakhresa Processing Industry (Tanzania), Transboundary Agro-ecosystem Management Program for the Kagera River Basin (KAGERA TAMP), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), Yara, Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, Stellenbosch University, International Water Management Institute, African Agricultural Technology Foundation, and International Fund for Agricultural Development.

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Other participants come from the University of Florida, Michigan State University, Virginia Tech, University of California, Africa RISING, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Makerere University, International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), University of Pretoria, University of West Cape (South Africa), Agriculture and Climate Risk Enterprise (ACRE Africa), Syngenta, University of Nairobi, African Forum for Agricultural Advisory Services, EcoAgriculture Partners (USA), and World Agroforestry Center.

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The Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI), which is spearheading this initiative, is a Feed the Future project funded by USAID. It aims to prepare the next generation of agricultural and nutrition leaders, and to strengthen and integrate the core institutions of agricultural research, education, and extension in Tanzania. The Ohio State University (OSU) is the managing entity for a consortium of six U.S. universities including Michigan State University, Virginia Tech, Tuskegee University, University of Florida, and Iowa State University. Key partners in Tanzania include the Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives (MAFC). The project prepares teachers, researchers and extension practitioners in Tanzania to cooperatively and effectively address needs of smallholder farmers and the growing agribusiness sector, and to strengthen the capacity of Tanzania’s leading agricultural teaching and research organizations to find solutions to the country’s food security challenges.

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June 1, 2015