The use of simple technological innovations, such as weather alerts via text messaging, is helping farmers reduce harvest losses and increase crop productivity:
Recent spikes in food prices around the world–and the unrest in the Middle East and North Africa–have sparked fears of a repeat of the 2008 food crisis. To find ways to help address these issues, the World Bank’s Agriculture and Rural Development division recently held events focusing on Understanding Volatility and Managing Risk.
One of the events, Non-traditional Approaches to Addressing Risk and Vulnerability in Agriculture, looked at innovative projects in Turkey and Kyrgyzstan that are addressing production risks and the vulnerability of agriculture because of changes in the climate. Senior Rural Development Specialist of the Europe and Central Asia Region, Talaibek Torokulovich Koshmatov, provided insight on how cell phones are providing weather alerts to farmers in both those countries. (full story)