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News About Farming On Earth and in Space
August 22, 2017
Harnessing rich satellite data to estimate crop yield
Urbana IL (SPX) Aug 21, 2017
Without advanced sensing technology, humans see only a small portion of the entire electromagnetic spectrum. Satellites see the full range--from high-energy gamma rays, to visible, infrared, and low-energy microwaves. The images and data they collect can be used to solve complex problems. For example, satellite data is being harnessed by researchers at the University of Illinois for a more complete picture of cropland and to estimate crop yield in the U.S. Corn Belt. "In places where we may see ju ... read more

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Adding silicon to soil to strengthen plant defenses
To help plants better fend off insect pests, researchers are arming them with stones. The University of Delaware's Ivan Hiltpold and researchers from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environme ... more
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Surprising two-way journey for apple on the Silk Road
Centuries ago, the ancient networks of the Silk Road facilitated a political and economic openness between the nations of Eurasia. But this network also opened pathways for genetic exchange that sha ... more
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Disneyland China falls a-fowl of huge turkey leg demand
Over nearly a century Disney has exported US culture across the globe, but the company was astonished to find one slice of Americana wildly popular in China - the turkey leg. ... more
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Climate change will cut crop yields: study
Climate change will have a negative effect on key crops such as wheat, rice, and maize, according to a major scientific report out Tuesday that reviewed 70 prior studies on global warming and agriculture. ... more
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Oceans possess vast, untapped potential for sustainable aquaculture
Covering 70 percent of Earth's surface, the world's oceans are vast and deep. So vast, in fact, that nearly every coastal country has the potential to meet its own domestic seafood needs through aqu ... more
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Efforts to reduce pollution from agriculture paying off slowly
Efforts by farmers to reduce the amount of fertilizer that reaches drinking water sources can take years to have a positive impact, according to a new study from the University of Waterloo. Th ... more
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'Inefficient' sailing fleet keeps oyster fishery alive
Oyster stocks in a Cornish fishery are sustained thanks to "inefficient" traditional fishing methods, new research suggests. The Fal oyster fishery is home to the only sail-driven commercial fishing ... more
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Experts point finger at Dutch oversight agency in egg scandal
Years of cuts at the Dutch food watchdog agency and a tendency among politicians to put economics ahead of public safety may be to blame for the EU's tainted-egg scandal that has spread as far as Hong Kong. ... more

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By attacking queen bumblebee, pesticide threatens colony: study
A common pesticide used on crops compromises a queen bumblebee's ability to lay eggs, threatening her colony with extinction, according to a study released Monday. ... more
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Can offshore fish farming feed a hungry world?
Harvesting fish and shellfish from offshore farms could help provide essential protein to a global population set to expand a third to 10 billion by mid-century, researchers said Monday. ... more
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Hong Kong, Switzerland, 15 EU states hit by egg scandal: EU
Insecticide-tainted eggs from European poultry farms have now been found in Hong Kong and Switzerland as well as 15 EU countries, the European Commission said Friday. ... more
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Cracking the code of megapests
For the first time, researchers from Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) have mapped the complete genome of two closely related megapests potentially sav ... more
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Dramatic changes needed in farming practices to keep pace with climate change
Major changes in agricultural practices will be required to offset increases in nutrient losses due to climate change, according to research published by a Lancaster University-led team. To co ... more
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Dutch egg probe widens to chicken meat tests
In a new twist in Europe's tainted egg scandal, Dutch authorities announced Tuesday they had started testing chicken meat coming from affected poultry farms to determine whether it was also contaminated. ... more
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A new threat to pollination : the dark side of artificial light
A European team, including a researcher from the Centre d'Ecologie et des Sciences de la Conservation (CNRS/MNHN/UPMC), has shown for the first time the direct and indirect impacts of artificial lig ... more
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Sale of genetically modified salmon in Canada alarms environmentalists
Environmentalists charged Monday that genetically modified salmon are being marketed in Canada without warning labels and called on supermarkets to withdraw them from sale. ... more

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Mexichem buys 80% of Israel's Netafim for $1.5 bln
Mexican group Mexichem is to buy 80 percent of Israel's world leading micro-irrigation firm Netafim for $1.5 billion, the Israeli company announced on Monday. ... more
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Low to no risk from pesticide-tainted eggs: experts
The pesticide fipronil at the heart of Europe's latest food safety scare is found in common household products used to rid the family dog of ticks, kill lawn pests, and in cockroach bait. ... more
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Paris's urban rooftop hives hope to preserve honeybees
To check the beehives he has set up on the roof of the sprawling Monnaie de Paris on the banks of the River Seine, Audric de Campeau slips on a harness over tan-coloured trousers. ... more
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Heatstruck Italy starts harvesting its thirsty vines
Italy's annual wine harvest, the biggest in the world, is off to its earliest start in a decade as the country swelters in a heatwave following months of drought. ... more
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Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
Producers sometimes face challenges that go deep into the soil. They need answers to help the soil, on site. A portable field sensor can accurately measure minerals in soils more easily and efficien ... more
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New system could remove two water pollutants from ag fields
Algae blooms in the Gulf of Mexico use up the majority of the oxygen in the water, leading to massive "dead zones" that cannot support fish or other wildlife. The culprit? Nitrate, running off agric ... more
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Global warming reduces protein in key crops: study
Rising carbon dioxide levels from global warming will drastically reduce the amount of protein in staple crops like rice and wheat, leaving vulnerable populations at risk of growth stunting and early death, experts warned Wednesday. ... more
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Adjusting fertilizers vital in claypan ag soils
All soils are not equal. Rich loams support the world's most productive agricultural regions, including swaths of the American Midwest. But in some parts of the Midwest, including areas in Missouri ... more
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