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One step closer to crops with twice the yield ONE STEP CLOSER TO CROPS WITH TWICE THE YIELD

Scientists from Wageningen University & Research have found natural genetic variation for photosynthesis in plants and are unravelling it to the DNA level. As a result it should be possible to breed crops that use photosynthesis more effectively in the future, increasing their yield and enabling them to capture more CO2 from the air in the soil. This represents a major step on the long road to solving global food challenges and realising the Paris climate agreement.

Led by Mark Aarts and Jeremy Harbinson, a team of scientists has shown that thale cress (a common model plant) has various genes involved in the adaptation to changes in the amount of light to which plants are exposed. Their study is published in an article in Nature Communications.

One gene has already been studied in detail. Known as the Yellow Seedling 1 gene, it is involved in the adaptation of chloroplasts to light changes. Due to a variation in this gene, some thale cress plants can handle an increase of light (the difference between a cloudy and a sunny day, for example) better than others. It is the first time that this variation has been found in thale cress, but as the genes for photosynthesis occur in nearly all plant species, the scientists expect that a similar variation can be found in many other crops too.

Some plants adapt their photosynthesis system

Plants need light to convert CO2 and water into sugars and oxygen. The sugars form the basis and energy source for all the substances that a plant produces in order to grow. We have known for some time that plants can respond differently to light, as is shown in the efficiency of their photosynthesis. The ancestors of the crops we eat on a daily basis needed this variation to make the best use of the places in which they grew. It allowed them to develop both in full sunlight and in the shade of other plants.

While photosynthesis is an essential process for plants, it comes at a risk and demands a high level of control to manage energy streams. If a plant is suddenly exposed to too much light, it has to adapt to the new situation. Plants generally protect themselves against excessive photosynthesis by maintaining various safety margins, which means that the adaptation takes several days. The study by the Wageningen scientists now shows that some plants can adapt quicker than others, and are thus able to adapt their photosynthesis system to their environment sooner. 

Selection on photosynthesis in breeding

Nowadays, we breed crops in an environment that is far easier to control than the original natural conditions. For example, plants now get sufficient nutrients and water, aligned to maximum growth. Due to the fast developments in agriculture over the past century, plants have not yet been able to adapt to these new conditions. One could say they are still cautious and respond relatively slowly to sudden changes such as excessive light. Plants which can adapt to changing light conditions faster will be able to use the available water and nutrients more efficiently, eventually producing a higher yield. 


So how come there is so little selection on more efficient photosynthesis in breeding? It was long thought that photosynthesis was naturally optimised and that little could be gained in breeding. Moreover, it is very difficult to measure the genetic contribution to the variation of photosynthesis of plants in the field, making it difficult to select on photosynthesis without prior knowledge. As photosynthesis is so sensitive to weather conditions, variations in the field – even between genetically identical plants – are often substantial. 


"We carried out our experiments under tightly controlled conditions, allowing us to keep variation in the environmental factors to a minimum," says Aarts. "We then measured the photosynthesis of all plants in the experiment at various times of day and via an identical method, and only applied a single stress factor: a one-off increase in the amount of light. This allowed us to precisely determine the genetic contribution to how plants adapted to the new stressful situation. We used one of the genes we found to study the variation in DNA sequence between the various plants in detail."


Miniature robots could cut pesticide use on farms in future MINIATURE ROBOTS COULD CUT PESTICIDE USE ON FARMS IN FUTURE

Robots could also reduce food waste and help harvest crops, but they may not be commercially available for some years to come, say experts.

Miniature robot farmers may be the answer to concerns over chemical use on farms and cutting down on food waste, as well as easing labour shortages, academic farming experts have said.

The drawback is that the machines in question, while developed in laboratories to an advanced stage, are not yet commercially available in the UK. In an optimistic scenario, they could become available in as little as three years, but that would be likely to take large investment and a high degree of entrepreneurialism in the private sector, the experts said on Monday.

Robots set to work in the fields would be able to target pesticides to the plants that need them, in contrast to current practices, dubbed “spray and pray”, which waste 95% to 99% of pesticides and herbicides because they are blanketed across entire fields. Most of this is wasted, but it promotes resistance among pests and weeds, rendering the harsh chemicals ineffective and encouraging farmers to use more. Some pesticides used in this way are also harmful to pollinators, such as bees, and their blanket use has been banned.

“Farmers have been heavily reliant for decades on the heavy use of pesticides. Some spraying is very desperate,” said Toby Bruce, professor of insect chemical ecology at Keele University. “Farmers are spraying [chemicals] to which there is resistance. They will not be killing pests as the pests have evolved resistance. They will be killing other insects [such as pollinators].”

If instead such products were used in tiny quantities and directed by robots so that 100% of the pesticide was going straight to the plant needed, then it might be possible to resume the use of banned or restricted pesticides, said Prof Simon Blackmore, head of robotic agriculture at Harper Adams University. Such targeted use would prevent pests from taking a hold on crops, but would be so small it would cause minimal harm to bees, and be less likely to give rise to resistance.

Robots would also be able to detect when fruit and vegetables were becoming malformed, which gives them a lower market value, and when they were too small to be harvested, allowing the harvesting to wait until they are ready. This would reduce food waste, said Blackmore.

Robots have the additional advantage that they could, if they become available soon, ease the pain of Brexit already being felt by some farmers, who are concerned about shortages of cheap imported labour needed to bring in their crops from the field.

But Blackmore and Ji Zhou, a project leader at the Earlham Institute, noted that while lab development of such technology is now at an advanced stage, more will be needed to bring it to market. Many farm technology companies are wedded to the existing model of large vehicles and blanket spraying, and fear the destruction of their business model from more targeted and higher-tech approaches.

“I think the innovation will come from start-ups,” said Blackmore. “We need to see more start-ups in this field.”

Bruce added that a complementary approach in reducing pesticide use was for chemicals companies and farmers to work with biotech experts to use already available technology such as pheromone traps, which capture pests without using pesticides and give an indication of whether pests are present and in quantities that require spraying.

He said experts were also increasingly using plants’ own genetic qualities to repel pests, citing the example of the orange wheat blossom midge, a pest to which some strains of wheat naturally developed their own defences. Those strains are now incorporated into 60% of the UK’s wheat crop, reducing the need for pesticides.

Krishithon 2017 – Nashik, India KRISHITHON 2017 – NASHIK, INDIA

Welcome to the 12th edition of Krishithon -2017

Show Start Date: 23 November 2017

Show End Date: 27 November 2017

Venue: Thakkers Dome, Near ABB Circle, Trimbak Road, Nashik, MaharashtraIndia.

Krishithon - 2017, The biggest international agriculture tradefair is organized by Media Exhibitors Pvt. Ltd which is going to be held from 23rd to 27th Nov. 2017 at Thakkar Dome, Near ABB Circle, Trimbak Road, Nashik . Krishithon is a platform for Knowledge, Innovation & Business for largest community of India i.e. Agriculture community. Krishithon 2017 is based on the foundation of KNOWLEDGE INNOVATION BUSINESS and offers tremendous opportunities to the stakeholders from the industry. Krishithon is not the usual hackneyed trade show but an amalgamation of product display, knowledge sharing and networking activities..

Organiser: Media Exhibitors Pvt. Ltd.

Nashik Corporate Office

Media House,Aanandi Nagar,
Near Hotel Red Chilly, Gangapur Road,
Nashik, Maharashtra, India - 422 013
Dial: +91 - 253 - 2970121 / 22 / 23
Fax: +91-253 – 2319103

Phone: 9822842265 | 9657021456 | 9881094456 | 7720081042

Email:  info@mediaexhibitors.com, krishi@mediaexhibitors.com

5th World Tea & Coffee Expo 2017 – Mumbai, India 5TH WORLD TEA & COFFEE EXPO 2017 – MUMBAI, INDIA

Show Start Date: 16 November 2017

Show End Date: 18 November 2017

Venue: Bombay Exhibition Centre, Goregaon, Mumbai, India.

Purpose: The World Tea & Coffee Expo (WTCE) was launched in 2013 to offer an organized avenue for all the industry stakeholders to come together under a single roof for networking, business expansion and ideas exchange. Cutting through a plethora of food and food processing shows and focusing purely on the Tea, Coffee & allied sectors, the Expo has established itself as the official, globally recognized Industry show with just four editions under its belt. 

Show Highlights: Country & Tea/Coffee Board pavilions & buyers from UAE, UK, Italy, USA, Sri Lanka, China, Nepal, Iran, Russia and many more planned. WTCE Mumbai India is the catalyst for companies to expand presence in India. Launch of latest technology and innovative products/retail chains, Bulk Orders, Appointing of Distributors etc at Expo ensures substantial interest from potential business associates with display of International and Indian innovations. This annual Expo determines trends related to the entire spectrum of the Hot Beverage sector.

Additional Activities: B2B match-making, Workshops & Championships by Industry Stalwarts, High Level 2-day Conference by Industry leaders, academicians and policy makers, Knowledge zone etc. 

Organiser: Sentinel Exhibitions Asia Pvt Ltd

Contact Us:

B-603, Samajdeep Blgd, Near Bhanu Park/Seasons Restaurant,

Adukia Rd, Off S V Road, Kandivali (W), Mumbai, Maharashtra 400 067. INDIA

Phone: +91-2228625131/32

Email: marketing@sentinelexhibitionsasia.com

Website: www.worldteacoffeeexpo.com

Rice Pro-Tech Expo 2017 - West Bengal, India RICE PRO-TECH EXPO 2017 - WEST BENGAL, INDIA

17th International Rice Grain Pro-Tech Expo 2017

Show Start Date: 17 November 2017

Show End Date: 19 November 2017

Venue: Children Culture Center, Kalpatru Math, Alamganj, Near National Highway 2, Burdwan – West Bengal, India.

Event Profile: Rice Pro-Tech Expo 2017 is a mega show on rice, dal, flour mill & packaging industry. Rice Pro-Tech Expo 2017 to be held on 17-19 Nov 2017. It will develop network opportunities and therefore the advancement and future enlargement of the related market sector are going to be increased with additional improved technologies and latest market trends that may be introduced during this international platform.

Exhibitor Product profile: Profile of exhibit based on Modern Rice Mill Machinery, Rice, Dal Mill Machinery, Flour Mill Machinery, Dryer Plants, Silos, Color Sorter Machines, V-Belts, Induction Motors, Generators, Conveyer Belts, Bag Stitching & Closing Machines, Packaging Machinery, Paddy Parboling Plants, POP & Non Woven Bags, Air Compressor, Solvent Extraction Plant Machinery, Oil Mill Machinery, Boilers & Rice, Banks & Commercial Institutes, Turbines & Gasifiers, Material Handling Systems, Research & Development Institutes, Waste Water Solution Provider, Logistics & Warehousing, Publication Houses, Safety & Security Devices, Air Ventilation Systems, Chemicals, Automation Solution Providers, Lab Equipment, Transformers, Stabilizers & Equipments.

Visitor Profile: Visitors like Suppliers & Dealers, Exporters, Mill Owner, Rice Market Consultants & Rice Brokers, Marketing Personnel, Engineers & Developers, Chamber of Commerce, Producers, scientists, Importers, Exporters and much more.

ORGANISER: Business Empire Exhibitions

HEAD OFFICE: D-56, Ist Floor, Rose Garden Market, Opp. Aurbindo School, Near Bus Stand, Patiala-147001 (Pb.) India.
Phone: +91 175-2302254
Mobile: +91 94172-80019, +91 98159-15726, +91 92162-99124 
Web.: www.indiariceexpo.com
E-mail: businessempire07@gmail.com

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