Declining diversity of sorghum, world’s fifth most important cereal crop, could threaten Africa’s food security

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sorghum farmers in kenya FARMERS TREND

The diversity of the crop Sorghum, a cereal used to make alcoholic drinks, has been decreasing over time due to agricultural practice. To maintain the diversity of the crop and keep it growing farmers will need to revise how they manage it.

The history of sorghum from its original domesticated state to today’s domesticated cereal has been found to be heavily influenced by human action, continuing to treat the plant as we currently do could mean the continued degradation of the crop.

Sorghum bicolor is a crop widely used for animal feed, and making beer….The wild ancestors of sorghum represent genomes that have not been damaged through cultivation. Although we don’t harvest the wild ancestors of sorghum it’s necessary to keep them alive as the ability to adapt to their surroundings….could be crucial in the future of Sorghum bicolor to threats of climate change, meaning crops have to adapt to new environments.

Related article:  Biotech crops could soften impact of climate change, Gates Foundation says

Professor Robin Allaby, from the School of Life Sciences at the University of Warwick comments: “Sorghum bicolor is the world’s fifth most important cereal crop….and is grown particularly in North-Eastern Africa generating an economy there.

Read full, original article: Beer and fodder crop has been deteriorating for 6,000 years

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