CIHEAM Press Review
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Events in Euro-Mediterranean Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Environment
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Estimating Impacts of Land Use Change on Evapotranspiration for Three Agricultural Crops in Malta—A Preliminary Assessment | Fenech | Journal of Agricultural Science | CCSE

Estimating Impacts of Land Use Change on Evapotranspiration for Three Agricultural Crops in Malta—A Preliminary Assessment | Fenech | Journal of Agricultural Science | CCSE | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it
Estimating evapotranspiration is crucial for better management of catchment water resources. In this study, the FAO CropWat model was used to estimate reference evapotranspiration (ETo), crop evapotranspiration (ETc), and total gross water requirements for three economically important agricultural crops grown in Malta: potatoes, wheat, and vineyards for three years representative of a typically wet (2003), average (2009), and dry (2013) year. In addition, changes in ETc due to changes in land use were estimated for 2009 and 2013 relative to a 2003 baseline. Across all three years and crops, the average ETo rates were estimated to range between 3.7 mm day -1 (2003) and 4.0 mm day-1 (2013) while average ETc rates were estimated to range between 1.6 mm day-1 and 5.3 mm day-1, respectively. For all three years, the highest total gross water requirement was estimated for wheat, reaching a maximum of 1450 mm in 2013. The results suggest that changes in land use between 2003 and 2013 were the main driver for changes in crop water demand. Differences in water demand compared to 2003 were estimated to range between -38% and 60%. This could have a substantial impact on the future sustainability of Malta’s increasingly constrained water resources.
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How Seeds from War-Torn Syria Could Help Save American Wheat

How Seeds from War-Torn Syria Could Help Save American Wheat | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it
As temperatures rise, pests and diseases are moving north into the U.S. heartland, killing crops and diminishing yields. To combat this, researchers are turning to a wild grass variety whose seeds were spirited out of Syria as the bombs fell. 
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Swimming Against the Current: Sustainable Agriculture in an Age of Commercial Farming

Swimming Against the Current: Sustainable Agriculture in an Age of Commercial Farming | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it

Farming today has become very commercial and competitive. Farmers are no longer growing crops for the welfare of themselves or the welfare of the people. Industrial agriculture has taken over farmers ever since the beginning of the green revolution – or rather, the farmers have taken over industrial agriculture. From our experience it is difficult to wean the farmers since universities are also hand in glove with the industries promoting the industrialisation of agriculture.

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Crop trade depletes global groundwater - News - Nature Middle East

The import and export of crops drawing on groundwater is threatening food and water security in the Middle East and elsewhere.
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Genetic Tweak to Photosynthesis Could Improve Crop Yields

Genetic Tweak to Photosynthesis Could Improve Crop Yields | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it

Scientists from the United States Department of Agriculture and the University of Illinois, Urbana have created a genetic “hack” to increase the effectiveness of photosynthesis and boost crop yields by up to 40 percent.
- Dr Paul South, member of the U.S. Agricultural Research Service
The study was done using tobacco plants, but the scientists said that similar techniques could be used in C4 photosynthetic plants. Tobacco is actually a C3 plant, but it photosynthesizes like a C4 plant. Olive trees are C4 plants.

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Revealed: How under-utilised Malaysian crops could help combat the 'collapse of global nutrition'

Revealed: How under-utilised Malaysian crops could help combat the 'collapse of global nutrition' | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it

Scientists in Malaysia are looking to replace the world's Big Four crops with under-utilised options to help solve global food security issues, especially in Asia.
“The world’s big four crops – wheat, rice, maize, and soybean – make up over 70% of the world’s food supply,”​ Professor Sayed Azam Ali, CEO, Crops For the Future (CFF) told FoodNavigator-Asia​. CFF is an independent international research centre, part of the Association of International Research and Development Centres for Agriculture (AIRCA). It is located in Malaysia.

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Panic over the red devils threatening to strip Tunisia of its grand palm trees

Panic over the red devils threatening to strip Tunisia of its grand palm trees | CIHEAM Press Review | Scoop.it

A red palm weevil infestation is decimating trees and posing a threat to the country’s date crop, a mainstay of the fragile economy. It’s an unlikely but very real crisis for a country with a teetering economy: a tiny red devil is invading Tunisia and it could cost hundreds of thousands of people their livelihoods.

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