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Monday, June 23, 2014

Gates Foundation give Purdue $10M grant to aid African farmers

Naijaagronet news :
Bill and Melinda Gates
Bill & Melinda Gates foundation has approved a $10 million (N1.7 billion) grant to Purdue University to develop a program that will put the crop-saving Purdue Improved Crop Storage bags into the hands of more farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa countries to improve their food security and income Naijaagronet news gathered.

The grant for the five-year project moves the Purdue Improved Crop Storage bags from research and applications for only one crop to commercialization involving multiple crops.

According to Purdue President, Mitch Daniels, “This project further extends a Purdue program that has long addressed a growing need for more abundant and safer food in Sub-Sahara Africa as part of our work in helping to reduce poverty and food insecurity globally. The next step is a crucial and practical one — developing a system so that more farmers in Africa can use these essential crop storage bags for many crops.”

The hermetic triple bagging, a chemical-free storage method developed by professor Larry Murdock in Purdue’s Department of Entomology, enables farmers to store a variety of major crops for more than one year after harvest. The technology helps improve food availability and increase income of small-holder farmers.

In using PICS bags, farmers no longer need chemicals to control grain storage pests. Grain storage loss to insects is estimated at 20 percent for major crops such as corn and common beans.

Chukwudi Obi 

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