World Vegetable Center breeding programs produce the materials national research institutes need to bring new resilient and productive varieties to farmers.
Conducted under the SNV-led CHAIN project funded by the Swiss Development Corporation (SDC), the workshop brought together 45 participants (10 women & 35 men) to learn how to graft tomato and when to apply the method.
International research on vegetable improvement in East and Southern Africa: Adoption, impact and returns
This study analyzes the adoption of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) and African eggplant (Solanum aethiopicum) varieties developed through international agricultural research, released by national agricultural research and extension systems (NARES) and supplied to farmers by private seed companies in East and Southern Africa from 1990 to 2015. We found that 50% of tomato and 98% of African eggplant commercial seed production in the region were varieties developed by the World Vegetable Center. WorldVeg and NARES invested US$ 6.9 million in research, extension, and promotion of these two crops. This generated economic gains of US$ 254 million for tomato and US$ 5 million for African eggplant in Tanzania up to 2014. The internal rate of return is 29.3% for tomato and 12.3% for African eggplant, though we project the latter to increase to 26.0% by 2024 as adoption only started in 2007. These results indicate international research into vegetable improvement to give returns to investment that are as high as those previously reported for some staple crops.
Results indicate that tomato production is being done by relatively young married individuals who have at least primary level education. More than 16% of respondents encounter produce losses due to high incidence of diseases, insect pest and mechanical injuries, each of them accounting for more than 20% of postharvest losses.
This project designs alternative options for insect pest management and will set the stage for partners to promote and popularize these options.
Tomato wild relatives are important sources of resistance to many pests of cultivated tomato [Solanum lycopersicum L. (syn. Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.)]. Eleven wild tomato accessions previously identified at the World Vegetable Center as resistant to Bemisia tabaci were evaluated for resistance to the two-spotted spider mite [Tetranychus urticae (Koch.)] Resistance to T. urticae based on the number of eggs from the no-choice bioassays was positively correlated with density of type IV glandular trichomes and negatively correlated with densities of type V trichomes. All resistant accessions accumulated high levels of total acylsugars, which were positively associated with type IV trichomes.
The tomato leaf miner (Tuta absoluta) is making inroads in Tanzania and other locations in East Africa. The World Vegetable Center and partners are working to develop strategies for farmers to manage Tuta, which can cause up to 100% loss of tomato fruits if left uncontrolled.
The World Vegetable Center and the Rural Development Administration (RDA), Republic of Korea, have embarked on a technical cooperation project to identify molecular markers associated with disease and insect resistance for marker assisted selection in tomato breeding programs. Specific goals are to map bacterial wilt (Ralstonia solanacearum) and whitefly (Bemisia tabaci) resistance loci.