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Posts Tagged ‘Worldwatch’
In this week’s episode, we discuss school feeding programs that are helping children and their families in many parts of Africa, where 60 percent of children come to school in the morning without breakfast, if they attend school at all. But, programs such as the The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), are helping to provides school meals for about 20 million children in Africa.
In this week’s episode, research intern Dana Drugmand discusses how using human waste as fertilizer provides a solution to crowded urban areas’ problems of lack of sanitation and food security. Innovations, such as composting toilets and a disposable bag called a Peepoo, are providing an agricultural answer to nature’s call.
To read more about the Peepoo and other innovations like it, see Innovation of the Week: Providing an Agricultural Answer to Nature’s Call
In this week’s episode, research intern Jenna Banning discusses the benefits of processing. By providing the right tools and services, organizations such as the Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) and the East Africa Dairy Development, are helping farmers improve their livelihoods and communities.
To read more about processing, see Innovation of the Week: It’s All About the Process
In this week’s episode, research intern Christina Wright discusses Sylvia Banda’s entrepreneurial efforts in Zambia. Since 1986, Banda has created small businesses like Sylva Professional Catering Services Limited. Her businesses have successfully created markets for local farmers and emphasized local cooking methods.
To read more about how small business are helping local communities, see: Innovation of the Week: Using Small Businesses to Create Local Markets
In this week’s episode, Nourishing the Planet research intern, Graham Salinger, discusses the Farmers of the Future Initiative (FOFI), a three year long program designed by CARE International to implement environmentally sustainable agricultural training in Rwanda’s schools.
To read about agricultural training in Rwanda, see: Innovation of the Week: Turning the School Yard into a Classroom
Women account for 75 percent of the agricultural producers in sub-Saharan Africa, but the majority of women farmers are living on only $1.25 per day, according to researchers from the Worldwatch Institute. “The lack of access to information technology and the inability to connect rural enterprises to banks can prevent women from obtaining vital financial services,” said Danielle Nierenberg, director of the Institute’s Nourishing the Planet project.
Despite the challenging circumstances that women in developing countries face, important innovations in communications and organizing are helping women play a key role in the fight against hunger and poverty. “Access to credit, which provides women farmers with productive inputs and improved technologies, can be an effective tool in improving livelihoods in Africa and beyond,” said Worldwatch Institute’s executive director Robert Engelman.
Worldwatch researchers traveled to 25 countries across sub-Saharan Africa to meet with more than 350 farmers groups, NGOs, government agencies, and scientists, highlighting innovations, such as better extension and communication services, that are helping farmers improve their livelihoods. The findings are documented in the recently released report, State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet.
Nourishing the Planet highlights four innovations that can strengthen women’s agricultural capacity: providing microfinance credit, providing access to the global market, providing extension services, and providing organizational support to women’s projects. (more…)
In this episode, research intern Matt Styslinger explains how simple technologies like treadle pumps or rope pumps can help farmers get water to their crops, improving their diets and their livelihoods.
To read about ways for farmers to get more water to their crops, see: Innovation of the Week: Getting Water to Crops
In this week’s episode, research intern Christina Wright discusses the benefits of drip irrigation. This technology conserves water, reduces the risk of soil erosion and nutrient depletion, and is less labor-intensive than traditional irrigation methods.
To read about drip irrigation, see: Innovation of the Week: Slow and Steady Irrigation Wins the Race.
By Molly Theobald
This is the first in a two part blog series about the Culinary Institute of America’s (CIA) “greening initiatives,” which are designed to teach young chefs about sustainable food production and consumption.
For Stephan Hengst, Marketing Director for the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), the relationship between agriculture, the environment, and chefs is a natural one. “It became really clear early on that chefs and their purchasing decisions had a profound effect on agriculture,” he said. And chefs can benefit greatly from local farmers as well. “Chefs always want the best and most interesting ingredients and by building relationships with growers chefs can get exactly what they want in the kitchen and farmers are guaranteed a market for their produce.”
CIA helps students understand the importance of purchasing fresh produce from local farmers whenever possible. One of the Institute’s four campuses is located in Hyde Park, New York, just 90 miles north of New York City, and is surrounded by farmland. “Farmers were coming to the campus and showing us these great, locally grown products,” continued Hengst. “We realized that we were just surrounded by these incredible resources.”
The other campuses are located in St. Helena, California; San Antonio, Texas; and Singapore. Each year CIA purchases close to $1 million dollars worth of local food to use in the classroom and in its public restaurants. The CIA’s California campus grows much of the food it uses in a student-run farm and students are raising 60,000 bees behind the recreational center. The campus is also using recycled oil to fuel campus vans and a utility vehicle. The Hyde Park campus no longer uses traditional detergents to wash the countless dishes coming out of their 41 kitchens and bakeshops. They now use electrolyzing cleaning system that turns salted tap water into chemical free cleaning solutions. In addition to an aggressive on campus recycling campaign, the Institute is also teaching students about compost and how to put today’s food waste towards next season’s meal.
Many of the students are taking these lessons to heart. “Some of the students, particularly our younger ones, have never been to a farm or seen exactly where their food comes from,” says Hengst. “Maybe they’ve never seen an artichoke before and suddenly they are getting their hands dirty in the garden and then using the harvest to cook a new meal in the classroom.”