Improving Cassava for Nutrition

Poor nutrition is a major global health problem, contributing to half of the nearly 10 million deaths that occur each year in children younger than 5 and much of the death disease and suffering impacting sub-Saharan Africa. A starchy root crop called cassava is the major source of calories for more than 250 million Africans in this region, but cassava has the lowest protein-to-energy ratio of any staple crop.

A typical diet based on cassava provides less than 30 percent of the minimum daily requirement for protein and only 10-20 percent of the required amounts of iron, zinc, vitamin A, and vitamin E. Moreover, because it carries low levels of a naturally occurring cyanide, cassava can be toxic if is not prepared properly. A promising long-term solution to this problem is to genetically modify crops, like cassava, that grow well in harsh climates so that they have high levels of essential nutrients.

Dr. Sayre is leading a multidisciplinary team of scientists, brought together as BioCassava Plus, that is working to create nutritious cassava for sub-Saharan Africa. Team members are screening additional transgenic plants and expect that complimentary genetic strategies currently underway will soon yield plants that achieve their targeted levels of iron, zinc, and protein.

Research Objectives:

Develop a novel cassava germplasm with increased levels of bioavailable zinc, iron, protein, and vitamins A and E
Lower levels of cyanogenic glycosides, which can compromise the health of consumers, especially those who are undernourished
Improve durability after harvest so roots can be stored longer
Increase resistance to viral disease.

Dr. Richard T. Sayre, Ohio State University, Ohio, United States - US

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Cassava flour applied for bread to overcome food crisis

Ghanaians will soon eat bread made from cassava flour, when a project to produce composite flour takes off in the country.

Composite flour consists of 20% of hybrid cassava flour and 80% of wheat, and does not reduce the quality of the flour.

The use of cassava flour in the production of bread is one of the measures instituted by government to contain the current food crisis facing the world.
Research has been done on the use of cassava flour with wheat flour for the production of bread, but legislation to enable flour mills to implement the process would soon be passed.

Ghana does not produce wheat but bread produced from wheat flour is a large part of the diet of many Ghanaians. The wheat is normally imported and the flour milled in the country.

This was made known by the Minister of Food and Agriculture, Mr. Ernest Akobuor Debrah in an interview with Joy News’ Akwasi Sarpong.

He said the government is considering measures that will help maintain current food prices in the country. He said in addition to sustaining the current food supply in the country with regards to food production, government is also looking at how to deal with the possible situations that might occur with regards to imported foods like rice and wheat.

He said Ghana, unlike her neighbours has stable food prices, and that is why the country has not experienced food related riots.

He said lots of structures have been put into place to produce good quality rice in Ghana. He revealed that experiments are ongoing for the production of what is known as ‘Nerica’ or New Rice for Africa.

These measures he said would reduce the importation of rice and increase local production.

Meanwhile, World Bank President, Robert Zoellick has said the crisis of surging world food prices could mean “seven lost years” in the fight against worldwide poverty.

He said “While many are worrying about filling their gas tanks, many others around the world are struggling to fill their stomachs, and it is getting more and more difficult every day.”

In his opinion therefore, to meet the crisis, there is the need for what he calls a “New Deal on Global Food Policy.”

He called on governments to fill the US$500 million food gap identified by the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) for the “immediate crisis.”

Under the New Deal, the World Bank will nearly double agricultural lending to Sub-Saharan Africa over the next year to US$800 million to substantially increase crop productivity. In addition, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank Group’s arm for private sector development, will boost its agribusiness investments.

The World Bank president is also proposing that sovereign wealth funds around the world allocate US$30 billion – one percent of their US$3 trillion assets – to investments for African “growth, development, and opportunity.” At his press briefing Thursday, Zoellick said rising food prices are also contributing to malnutrition, one of the “forgotten” Millennium Development Goals.

He said, “this is not just about meals foregone today or about increasing social unrest. This is about lost learning potential for children and adults in the future, stunted intellectual and physical growth. Even more, we estimate that the effect of this food crisis on poverty reduction worldwide is in the order of seven lost years. So we need to address this not just as an immediate emergency but also in the medium term for development.”

Mr. Zoellick said the poor of the world spend as much as 75 percent of their income on food. “In just two months, rice prices have skyrocketed to near historical levels, rising by around 75 percent globally.” The price of wheat has risen 120 percent over the past year, he added.

The World Bank estimates that over the past three years, food prices overall have risen 83 percent.

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For more area of cassava crop for biofuel

A Filipina biofuel producer is seeking to develop cassava plantations in the country to support a 200,000 litre (52,834 gallons) ethanol plant in Central Mindanao, according to local media reports.

Eastern Renewables Fuel Corp. would need at least 12,000 hectares (29,653 acres) of cassava plantations to put up an ethanol processing facility. The biofuel producer is targeting 5,000 hectares (12,355 acres) next year after entering into contracts with local farmers to acquire 2,210 hectares (5,461 acres) for harvest this year.

Eastern Renewables' present plantations are located in Central Mindanao, mostly in Sarangani province. About 500 hectares (1,236 acres) of them are due for harvest around this time, Sidney B. Elejerio, operations manager of Eastern Renewables, said during an interview with GMA TV news.

Eastern Renewables had also entered into a memorandum of agreement with China's Junaxi State Farm to develop cassava plantations.

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Stands at bay eating Rasi

Rice and Rasi (by the name food processed from cassava in indonesia) of course differs in but it’s the function is same, as staple food. Rice made from rice material, while Rasi from cassava material. If Rice consumed by some of Indonesia publics, while Rasi only consumed by a few people in Kampung Cirendeu, Leuwigajah, Cimahi Town, West Java.

When during Rice new order becomes favorite as component of staple food, many member of certain publics - as in Papua with habit eats corms, Gunung Kidul eats tiwul and other - changes over to rice. Hence, at that time, recognized term people or member remain to is told is poor if has not eaten rice.

But, member of public Kampung Cirendeu non imbued with of the mention, they remain to maintains habit which they to inherit hereditary, eats Rasi. And, the tradition had been acted the kampong ancestor since a period of colonization of Dutch 1918. But happened change of term from initial Sanguen becomes Rasi.

The story, by 1924 the doyens Kampung Cirendeu assess name of Sanguen doesn't be national, hence changed to to become Rasi. Actually, the the kampong ancestors doesn't refuse rice, but they have history which do not benefit with morning crop.

At one time, in colonization epoch of Dutch, area of rice field which has been cultivated abrupt paddy to run dry. very Difficult rice supply at that time and member of kampong started looks for way out from this problem, by changing rice field to become cassava garden area. And, since then public Cirendeu familiarizes consumes cassava.

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Exploiting of Extract Cassava for tooth impression material mixture

In impression material Indonesia alginate many applied circle medical of tooth although still must be imported from outside country. Since economics crisis the year 1998 the price of increasing alginate impression material until four times at that moment.
This situation resulted in efforts to modify the commercial alginate as had been conducted by a dentist in South Sumatera province in Indonesia.

He who had added cassava starch into the commercial alginate used to make partial denture impression. The aim of this research is to investigate the effect of additional cassava starch into the commercial alginate on its ability to produce reproduction detail using type III gypsum the amont of 120 specimens were divided into 6 group of various additional cassava starch 45–55%.

The specimens then being impressed with detail reproduction tool (ISO No. : 1563/1978) and the result is then analyzed under a stereo microscope. Conclusion: the alginate impression material with cassava starch with ratio up to 47,5% can be used as an impression in 50μm and 75μm in depth line

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