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Italian scientist brings ‘Pasta Power’ climate adaptation solution to West Africa
December 11, 2017
A ‘crazy idea’ has resulted in the ability to grow durum wheat in the extreme heat of famine-affected Senegal, Mauritania and Mali, potentially boosting the income for 1 million farming families, and therefore winning the 2017 Olam Prize for Innovation in Food Security.
The genome fingerprinting research project, led by Dr Filippo Bassi of ICARDA (International Centre for Research in the Dry Areas) and Professor Rodomiro Ortiz (SLU, Alnarp), and funded by the Swedish Research Council, used non-GM molecular breeding techniques to develop a set of durum wheat varieties that can withstand constant 35-40 degree heat along the savannah of the Senegal River basin.