South America

Re-thinking crop choice and land use to overcome climate change

Climate change is likely to reduce yields of major crops such as corn, wheat and rice on a large fraction of the world's cropland by mid-century, says a team of researchers from the University of Birmingham in Britain. "Large shifts in land-use patterns and crop choice will likely be necessary to sustain production growth rates and keep pace with demand," say the researchers in a paper published in the journal Nature Communications.

In South America, seaweed is the new kale

Wild seaweed is becoming an increasingly popular food source and moneymaker across South America, says Take Part. Most of the region’s seaweed is gathered from the wild, rather than cultivated as it is other parts of the world, like Asia. Of Chile’s 30,000 wild harvesters, most are women.

Global land grab worsens, covers 30 million hectares

The worldwide spike in food prices nearly a decade ago set off a land-buying surge by wealthy investors and nations wanting to shore up their food supply by acquiring cropland in developing nations. The surge was decried by critics as land grabs that would displace small farmers and herders. "The emerging new trend we wrote about in 2008 has continued and become worse," says the nonprofit Genetic Resources Action International (GRAIN).

Longer forest fire seasons around the world

Due to hotter weather and more days without rain, the length of forest fire season has grown by 19 percent over the past 35 years, says a team of researchers.

Global milk production to fall slightly as market prices soften

Dairy farmers in Argentina are forecast to slash milk production by 9 percent this year, the largest cutback among the major dairy-exporting nations, says the USDA in a semi-annual report. The Dairy: World Markets and Trade report sees an overall drop in production of 1 percent by the five …

Who owns quinoa, the Andean grain?

Quinoa, a resilient and nutritious grain, is gaining popularity worldwide. It is a complete protein and contains significant amounts of iron, calcium, fiber and fatty acids.