Oil Palm Farming

Oil Palm Gives Smallholders an Economic Lift, but at What Cost?

A decade ago, this author had the pleasure of touring a region of smallholder oil palm farms in northeastern Colombia, the Catatumbo. This wasn’t your …

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something about nettles Latest News

There’s Something About Nettles…

The stinging nettle earned its name for a reason—this family of plants is known for distinctive spiked “hairs” on stems and leaves, an evolved defense …

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Africa

A Union of African Universities Supporting Smallholder Farmers

Smallholder farms dominate African agriculture but have long been relatively neglected in international development circles. Global interest in Africa is increasing, and African universities possess …

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Asia

Community Seed Banks are Quickly Becoming Mainstream

Farmers have been storing, repurposing, and even sharing seeds for thousands of years. Formal public seed banks to preserve important seeds may have existed as …

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Africa

Bringing Advice to the Smallholder Farm with Online Maps

Smallholder farmers often face harsh or idiosyncratic growing conditions, and techniques developed for optimal conditions often don’t work.  But information technology is starting to help. …

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Africa

Rodent Control – The Natural Way

Most efforts to support smallholder farmers focus on initiatives and innovations deployable in the daytime. Few innovators think up interventions that work mainly at night, …

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Asia

Bring Back the Chocolate: Building a Better Cocoa Bean in Malaysia

Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween, and White Day wouldn’t be the same without cacao. And smallholder farming in Malaysia isn’t the same as it was back …

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Asia

Farm Certification Schemes – Do They Work?

Smallholder farming is a tough business sometimes described as, ‘Buy retail, sell wholesale’. Governments around the world have tried lots of things to help farmers …

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