Archive for the ‘Videos’ Category

Aug31

Challenges Exist Using Video to Spread Farmer Knowledge

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By Angela Kim

By the end of 2011, there were 6 billion mobile-cellular subscriptions in the world. Most of this growth was driven by developing countries, which accounted for 80 percent of new mobile-cellular subscriptions. Although this rapid expansion of technology has created advantages for rural farmers, including linking farmers to markets, improving transportation logistics, and greater access to videos via cellular devices, substantial challenges still exist in the use of video to teach and learn sustainable agricultural practices.

Videos can be used as a teaching method to share experiences in sustainable farming. (Photo credit: Naimul Haq/IPS)

Video has become an alternative medium for helping farmers learn to integrate crop and pest management. Instructional videos can overcome the problem of illiteracy among rural farmers—according to United Nations data, approximately 80 percent of those living in developing countries can’t read. Women in rural farming communities, in particular, who more often lack access to education, land, and capital, have benefited from video-based training, which has helped them to become rural entrepreneurs.

Despite several benefits of using videos to spread farmer knowledge, the quality of content has a major influence on farmers’ interest in participating. Digital Green, an India-based project that uses video to advance existing agricultural extension systems, has demonstrated that videos of classroom-style lectures were perceived by farmers to be monotonous. Instead, they like more intimate, diversified-content types that include concrete demonstrations, testimonials, and even entertainment. And according to Digital Green, the degree to which farmers trust the content of a video depends on the language, clothing, and mannerisms featured in the film. Farmers involved with Digital Green were more inclined to trust information in videos that featured their neighbors than those which featured government experts.

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Aug14

Hidden Cost of Hamburgers

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By Caitlin Aylward

The “Food for 9 Billion” project recently released a video highlighting the “Hidden Cost of Hamburgers” as a part of a new YouTube investigative reporting channel, The I Files.

The video uncovers the true price of a hamburger, revealing the environmental and social costs of factory-farmed meat.

The average American eats around 3 hamburgers a week, which adds up to 156 burgers per person each year. As a nation, Americans consume more than 48 billion burgers annually.

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Jul20

Incubating Entrepreneurs and Businesses in African Agriculture: An Interview with Nii Simmonds

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By David Batcheck 

Name: Nii Simmonds

Affiliation: Co-Founder & Program Director The DAIN Network (Diaspora Angel Investment Network)

Bio: Nii Simmonds is a recognized speaker and consultant on African entrepreneurship/SME development and innovation in Africa.

 

How can the DAIN Network empower Africans to build sustainable enterprises?

Through an agricultural incubator, where people can see ideas that can scale. We’re focused on post-harvest losses, that’s where our target is. The average African crop has about 20-40 percent post harvest losses, depending on the sector and market. In the United States, if you have an idea you have a variety of options: a business incubator or small business development center. We’re trying to take the Silicon Valley incubation model to Africa and use the Diaspora to provide mentorship and technical assistance.

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Mar22

Changing the Way We Eat: Raising Pigs & Problems

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On January 21st, TEDxManhattan featured a series of speakers with backgrounds in food and farming who shared their knowledge and expertise with thousands of audience members watching in-person and virtually from around the world.

Today, Nourishing the Planet highlights a TEDxManhattan talk by Dr. David Wallinga, who discusses the problems with antibiotic use in animals.

In his talk, “Raising Pigs & Problems: Saying No to Antibiotics in Animal Feed,” Dr. Wallinga explains that producers in the large-scale meat production industry often incorporate antibiotics into their animal feed in an attempt to ward off disease, which can spread rapidly among animals kept confined in close quarters. But widespread use of antibiotics can actually create antibiotic resistance, making it harder to fight illness among animals and humans alike. Antibiotics that are present in animal waste leach into the environment and contaminate water and food crops, posing a serious threat to public health.

Click here to watch Dr. Wallinga’s talk and those by other TEDxManhattan 2012 speakers.

To purchase State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

Mar22

Fighting Striga

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By Paul Van Mele

Paul Van Mele is the Director of Agro-Insight, a Belgian enterprise that merges expertise from science, communication, and arts to support sustainable agriculture and equitable trade.

‘Fighting Striga’ may not be a Hollywood – or even Nollywood – blockbuster but it is set to grab the attention of farmers throughout Africa.

A listing of the available programs offered. (Image credit: Agro-Insight)

Scientists have invested heavily over the past 40 years to fight one of the world’s most troublesome weeds, Striga. This parasitic weed seriously damages maize, sorghum, millet, rice, and fonio. While developing Striga-resistant varieties is a key area of research, insights into how soil fertility management and other options can help to reduce Striga infestation proved hard to communicate effectively with farmers.

In 2006, the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) embarked on farmer field schools and came up with practical integrated Striga and soil fertility management practices for pearl millet and sorghum. A scarcity of skilled trainers, however, made it hard to maintain quality while scaling up.

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Mar01

What You Need to Know About Hunger

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Check out this latest video brought to you by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s Ending Hunger campaign.

The video highlights that to eliminate global hunger, we need to address the core underlying cause—poverty. Increasing global food production and food aid are not enough if basic rural infrastructure and employment opportunities are insufficient. Efforts to boost the rural economy by improving roads, building irrigation canals, supporting rural banking, improving rural communication, training farmers, and empowering women can improve agricultural production and increase incomes.

Click here to view the video and here to sign the campaign’s petition to end hunger.

To purchase State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

Feb29

Changing the Way We Eat: Bringing the Backyard to the Bronx

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On January 21st, TEDxManhattan featured a series of speakers with backgrounds in food and farming who shared their knowledge and expertise with thousands of audience members watching either in-person at the event or virtually from around the world.

Today, Nourishing the Planet highlights a TEDxManhattan talk by Kerry McLean, who discusses the advantages of the New York City Green Cart program.

In her talk, “Green Carts: Bringing the Backyard to the Bronx,” McLean describes the Green Cart program, a fleet of vending carts that sell only fruits and vegetables all over the city. Residents in some areas of New York City lack access to fresh and affordable produce, but the Green Cart program brings fruits and vegetables right into their neighborhoods, making healthy eating more affordable and accessible.

Click here to watch McLean’s talk and those by other TEDxManhattan 2012 speakers. For more information about the New York City Green Cart program, click here.

To purchase State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

 

 

Feb23

Changing the Way We Eat: Thinking of Soil as More Than Just “Dirt”

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On January 21st, TEDxManhattan featured a series of speakers with backgrounds in food and farming who shared their knowledge and expertise with thousands of audience members watching either in-person from seats at the event or virtually from around the world.

Today, Nourishing the Planet highlights a TEDxManhattan talk by Fred Kirschenmann, who discusses the importance of soil in our food production system.

In his talk, “Soil: From Dirt to Lifeline,” Kirschenmann notes that while we tend to think of soil simply as “dirt,” it is in fact a “vibrant living community” that we should instead learn to value as a precious resource. Our large-scale food production system currently uses many techniques that diminish soil quality and quantity, but Kirschenmann discusses several alternatives that are both more productive and better for the soil and the environment.

Click here to watch Kirschenmann and other TEDxManhattan 2012 speakers.

To purchase State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

Oct05

Nourishing the Planet TV: Messages From One Rice Farmer to Another

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In this week’s episode, Nourishing the Planet research intern Emily Gilbert discusses the Africa Rice Center‘s knowledge sharing, “Farmer to Farmer” videos, a video series that seeks to educate and instruct rice farmers on new production and storage techniques being developed by smallholder rice farmers around the world.

Video: http://youtu.be/BKKUKXBcFbo

To read about the Africa Rice Center’s “Farmer to Farmer” videos, see Innovation of the Week: Messages from One Rice Farmer to Another

To purchase your own copy of State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet, please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.

Aug29

Parenti video highlights the influence of climate change on global conflict

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Check out this recent Press TV  video of Christian Parenti  discussing his most recent book Tropic of Chaos: Climate Change and the New Geography of Violence.

Parenti highlights the contribution that climate change is making to global conflict by causing droughts and creating a shortage of arable land and resources which exacerbates poverty and war. He argues that the depletion of resources, especially agricultural resources, along with reduced food security resulting from climate change, are major contributors to global violence and conflict.  Global security challenges, he theorizes, are “caused by the most colossal set of events in human history: the catastrophic convergence of poverty, violence, and climate change.”

What do you think? Do you think climate change can contribute to conflicts? Let us know in the comments section!

To purchase your own copy of State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet, please click HERE. And to watch the one minute book trailer, click HERE.