Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Plant clinic scheme of CABI recieves a boost from the UK and Swiss governments

The "plant clinic" scheme of CABI to improve food security in developing nations has received a £6.8m boost from the UK and Swiss governments.

The clinics, similar to human doctors' surgeries, offer local farmers advice on how to treat pests and diseases. Organisers hope to collate data from front-line "plant doctors" in order to provide an early warning system. It is hoped that more than 400 clinics will be established in 40 countries over the next five years.

Trevor Nicholls, CEO of Cabi (Centre for Agriculture Bioscience International) - a not-for-profit science body - said the investment of £1m from the UK government and £5.8m from Swiss ministers was a "significant endorsement for the initiative".

Trevor Nicholls, CEO, CABI discusses Plantwise. Plantwise is a global initiative aimed at reducing global crop losses and improving food security. This short video outlines the importance of tracking, monitoring and distributing information about plant pest and diseases; as well as delivering practical advice to smallholder farmers.

A demo of the new Plantwise Knowledge Bank, an online resource dedicated to improving food security worldwide through access to evidence-based plant health information. Diagnostic and treatment support is provided, along with access to region-specific extension materials. Pest distribution data is also provided, down to the most local levels possible. The Plantwise Knowledge Bank is a true partnership, with information coming from CABI and many other plant health initiatives.