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close this bookSPORE Bulletin of the CTA No. 31 - February 1991 (CTA Spore, 1991, 16 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
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View the documentGreen power for African farming: sun, wind and biomass
View the documentSenegal's saline soils have a future - despite the drought
View the documentSmallholder poultry development protein for today - and tomorrow
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Keeping bees for better nutrition

Beekeeping is practiced in all parts of the world, and honey is produced and marketed as an international commodity. Bees are recognized as important pollinators of food crops. New management and production techniques are continually being developed in response to the increased demand for honey and other hive products and in recognition of the role of bees in pollination.

In many parts of Africa, honey is collected from tree branches hollows and crevices, but only in Egypt, Kenya and Tanzania is the practice of keeping bees in hives followed to any great extent. Even there traditional beekeeping does not make use of correct equipment and modern techniques. Two books have been published recently which throw light on the practice and science of bees and beekeeping both in Africa and worldwide.

Beekeeping in Africa, by Stephen O Adjare of the Apiculture Unit of the Kumasi University of Science and Technology in Ghana, is one of the Food and Agriculture Organization's Service Bulletins. It focuses on the problems, opportunities and resources which are peculiar to Africa, while drawing on the experience of beekeepers from around the world. It stresses the potential that beekeeping offers to rural development for nutrition and income generation, and concentrates on the use of local technology and materials as well as the particular characteristics of the African honeybee.

Bees and beekeeping: science, practice and world resources, by Eva Crane, who was formerly director of the International Bee Research Association, explains the scientific principles underlying effective beekeeping and their practical application in different climates and conditions. Dr Crane's work includes sections on varieties of bees, types of hives, bee health, plant resources and hive products. It finishes with a study of beekeepers themselves and the laws relating to beekeeping. There are also appendices on world honey sources and their geographical distribution and a gazeteer of individual countries, together with bibliography, plant index, geographical name index and subject index.

Beekeeping in Africa by Stephen Adjare 1990, 130pp ISBN 92 5 1027943 Publications Division, FAO Via delle Terme di Caracalla 00100 Rome, ITALY
Bees and beekeeping: science practice and world resources by Eva Crane 1990. 614 pp ISBN 0 434 90271 3. price UKL.85.00 Reed Book Services Sanders Lodge, Rushden Northamptonshire NN10 9YZ, UK


Agricultural diversification in the Carribean

The proceedings of a conference held in Barbados, 27 November - 1 December, 1989 have been published.

The conference was jointly sponsored by the Carribean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) and CTA.

Available from CTA

Also received

Training resource book for farming systems diagnosis - process documentation of an experiential reaming exercise in farming systems diagnosis of the ICAR/IRRI collaborative Rice Research Project, held at Birsa Agricultural University, Kanke, Ranchi, Bihar, India, compiled by Clive Lightfoot, 33 pp, 1990, ISBN 971 104 22 3.

A limited number of complimentary copies are available from: Clive Liqhtfoot, Farming Systems Specialist, International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, MC PO Box 1501, Makati, Metro Manila 1299, PHILIPPINES

Processing and preservation: cutting the waste

Small farms in Africa produce more than 80% of staple food requirement for both urban and rural areas, and 50-60% of the materials needed for industry. However, an over-reliance on large-scale food-processing units, bought from industrialized countries, means that there is a continuing need for substantial imports of parts, for raw materials and for maintenance services. Because most farms in Africa are small-scale, they rarely run at full capacity.

Although developing countries are striving to increase their food production, much food is wasted before it can be eaten because processing and preservation are carried out in the place of production. A new book, Processing and preservation of tropical and subtropical foods by J. Maud Kordylas, provides information on tropical food crops, their proper harvesting, handling, storing, processing and preservation.

Mrs Kordylas emphasizes traditional processes and their importance and relevance to the development of the food sector, and how they might be improved. Domestic skills are given as the basis from which food producers can move to industrial food processing. The contents of the book are organized to give a systematic and formal approach to each crop group. While the traditional processes of handling are fully documented, a scientific modern basis for the practice is also given .

This comprehensive book, will be valuable to teachers, students, employees of the food processing industry and to food scientists.

Processing and preservation of tropical and subtropical foods J. Maud Kordylas, 414 pp, 1990 price UKL12.00 Available from CTA

To the hands of the poor Roben Chambers, N C Saxena and Tushaar Shah, 273 pp, 1989 ISBN 185339 047X, price UKL6.95 available from Intermediate Technology Publications, 103/105SouthamptonRow London WC1B 4HH, UK

Notice to publishers

Spore’s “bookshelf” offers you an excellent opportunity to reach readers in ACP countries. We review and announce books on all aspects of agriculture and rural development, reflecting all shades of opinion and covering all regions.

To help us improve the effectiveness of this service, we are inviting all of you who publish or distribute books and periodicals to send us review copies of your publications. However, because of limited space, we cannot guarantee to announce all the books we receive.

Spore, CTA Documentation Service, Postbus 380, 6700 AJ Wageningen - THE NETHERLANDS

Managing tropical forests for the future

Unless timber can be harvested in a sustainable manner tropical forests, and their associated flora and fauna, will not survive. The conservation of the tropical forest has become an international issue, and its sustainable utilization is high on the political agenda. It is the harvesting of timber that gives governments the principal economic justification for keeping forest as forest, though whether this activity is truly sustainable and environmentally acceptable is widely debated.

The forests are rapidly becoming exhausted, and management practices must change. In No timber without trees: sustainability in the tropical forest, Duncan Poore, a former Director of the Common wealth Forestry Institute of Oxford, together with four co-authors, reviews the extent to which natural forests are already being sustainably managed for timber production.

Timber management is placed in the wider context of tropical forest conservation, and the authors outline a strategy for further action.

No timber without trees: sustainability in the tropical forest by Duncan Poore, Peter Burgess John Palmer, Simon Rietbergen and Timothy Synnot, a study for the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) 252 pp, 1989, price UK9.95 ISBN 1 85383 050 X Earthscan Publications Ltd 3 Endsleigh Street London WClH 0DD, UK

The uses of tropical grasses

The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) has produced a comprehensive book describing the wide range of grasses suited to pasture and other uses. It provides information on their adaptation, cultivation and management. This information is necessary for increasing production and improving the land, especially in developing countries.

Tropical grasses by P J Skerman and Fernando Riveros 832 pp, 1989 ISBN 92-5-1001 128 1 FAO Plant Production and Protection Series no. 2 Distribution and Sales Section Via delle Terme di Caracalla 00100 Rome ITALY

Biological control: supplement published

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) has published the first supplement to Biological control: Pacific prospects, by D F Waterhouse and K R Norris, which was published in 1981. The supplement covers six further insect pests.

Biological control: Pacific prospects, supplement 1 123 pp. 1989, ISBN 09949511 98 6 published by ACIAR, GPO Box 1571, Canberra, AUSTRALIA

Biotechnology: changing the face of the earth?

Two recent books expIore the advances in biotechnology which, during the next century, may change the face of the world. Biotechnology may be the key to providing sufficient food for the world's growing population; it may conquer disease; and it may drastically reduce the number of chemical pesticides and fertilizers which currently destroy the ecology, nature's balance.

Miracle or menace? Biotechnology and the Third World, a Panos Dossier by Robert Walgate, describes the process by which biotechnology takes control of evolution, and then proceeds to make clear its implications for the developing countries. It ends with the sombre question, in whose interest is this science being developed? Whether it becomes a miracle solution or a threat depends entirely on how it is used and controlled, and ultimately perhaps, by whom.

This is a thought-provoking book, clearly presented and easily read. In the final chapter the author's conclusions are set out with clarity.

Beyond Mendel's garden: biotechnology in the service of world agriculture, by Gabrielle Persley, is the first in the CAB International series on Biotechnology in Agriculture. It is a non-specialist book, focusing more on policy and socio-economic issues than on the science itself. It is aimed at a wide readership, policy-makers, nonspecialist scientists, students and teachers, concerned with aspects of agriculture and Third World development.

The contents include explorations of policy options; constraints to agricultural productivity; assessment of technology; socio-economic issues, biotechnology in both industrialized and developing countries; environment and regulation; patents, international research centres; World Bank investment; options for international development agencies.

Miracle or menace? Biotechnology and the Third World, Robert Walgate 199 pp, 1990, ISBN 1870670 183 price UKL6.95, The Panos Institute, 9 White Lion Street, London N1 9PD, UK

Beyond Mendel's garden: biotechnology in the service of agriculture, Gabrielle Persley, 176 pp 1990, ISBN 0 85198 682 X, price UKL11.95, US$21.00 CAB International, Wallingford Oxon OX10 ODE, UK

Fighting insect damage to legumes

Legumes provide an important source of protein for many in Third World countries. They also increase soil nitrogen levels. However, insect pests cause major damage to the principal legume crops In developing countries (cowpea, soybean, beans, pigeonpea and groundnut) and chemical control is expensive and increasingly unacceptable on environmental grounds.

Insect pests of tropical food legumes, edited by S R Singh, who is Director of the Grain Legume Improvement Program at IITA in Nigeria, focuses on the development of crops that are resistant to infestation by insects and explores methods which can minimize the need for chemical control. By these means, while insect attack may never totally be conquered, damage can be limited and yields stabilized.

The information in this book has been arranged by crop description so that the campaigners in the crusade against insect damage can concentrate easily on the insects that affect production and growth. Included in each chapter are colour illustrations. There is an 86-page bibliography.

Insect pests of tropical food legumes edited by S RSingh 451 pp, 1990 ISBN 0 471 92390 i Available from CTA