Araus JL, Kefauver SC, Zaman-Allah M, Olsen MS, Cairns JE. 2018.

Posted on Published Journals, Research Publication, January 23, 2019

Translating high throughput phenotyping into genetic gain. Trends in Plant Science 23, 451-466. DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2018.02.001

Abstract: Inability to efficiently implement high-throughput field phenotyping is increasingly perceived as a key component that limits genetic gain in breeding programs. Field phenotyping must be integrated into a wider context than just choosing the correct selection traits, deployment tools, evaluation platforms, or basic data-management methods. Phenotyping means more than conducting such activities in a resource-efficient manner; it also requires appropriate trial management and spatial variability handling, definition of key constraining conditions prevalent in the target population of environments, and the development of more comprehensive data management, including crop modeling. This review will provide a wide perspective on how field phenotyping is best implemented. It will also outline how to bridge the gap between breeders and ‘phenotypers’ in an effective manner.

KEYWORDS: field phenotyping; genetic gain; high-throughput; remote sensing

Didier Kadjo, Jacob Ricker-Gilbert, Abdoulaye Tahirou, Gerald Shively, Nasser BACO, 2018. Storage losses, liquidity constraints, and maize storage decisions in Benin.

Posted on Published Journals, Research Publication, January 23, 2019

Agricultural Economics, volume 49, number 4, pages 435-454, ISSN 0169-5150, 2018. [DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/agec.12427]

Abstract: This article estimates how storage losses from mold, insects, and other pests, combined with liquidity constraints, influence a smallholder farm household’s decision to store maize on farm after harvest. We analyze panel data from 309 smallholders in Benin covering the 2011 and 2013 harvest seasons. Results suggest that smallholders are driven to sell at harvest time for different reasons, depending on their motivation for storing. In households that report direct consumption as their primary goal for storing maize, liquidity constraints, not storage losses, reduce the amount they store. In contrast, households that store maize with the intention of selling it later in the year appear unaffected by liquidity constraints. Instead, these households store less when they expect to lose more during storage. These results suggest that policies to provide liquidity will be more helpful in motivating storage among consumption‐oriented households. Households motivated to store for later sale will benefit from modern storage technologies that mitigate the operational costs associated with storage losses.

Abdoulaye, Tahirou, Tesfamicheal Wossen and Bola Awotide., 2018. Impacts of Improved Maize Varieties in Nigeria: Ex-Post Assessment of Productivity and Welfare Outcomes.

Posted on Published Journals, Research Publication, January 23, 2019

Food Security, volume 10, pages 369-379, ISSN 1876-4517, 2018. [DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12571-018-0772-9].

Abstract: Investment in agricultural research and development is an important intervention for improving crop productivity and household welfare in most developing countries where agriculture is the main source of livelihoods. This paper uses nationally representative plot- and household-level data from the major maize producing regions of Nigeria to assess the impacts of adoption of improved maize varieties on maize yield and household welfare outcomes. The study found that adoption of improved maize varieties increased maize grain yield by 574 kg/ha and per-capita total expenditure by US$ 77 (US$ 0.21/day). We found that the incidence of poverty among adopters would have been higher by 6% without adoption of the improved varieties. These findings underscore that investments and policy measures to increase and sustain the adoption of improved maize cultivars are critical for improving the productivity of maize in Nigeria and reducing poverty.

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