New Bean Varietals Released in Sub-Saharan Africa This Summer
A study produced strong evidence suggesting a diet of conventionally bred beans rich in iron can reverse iron deficiency in women in four and a half months. These biofortified bean varieties contain two times as much iron than common bean varieties, making them a much needed weapon in the fight to reduce iron deficiency globally.
Woman enjoying beans. Photo: HarvestPlus.
Researchers released three new, improved chickpea varieties to achieve higher grain yield with resistance to disease and the ability to grow in high altitude regions. Breeders from regional and national Ethiopian centers for agricultural research collaborated to produce chickpeas, the nutritional and income-generating benefits of which impact smallholder farmers in Ethiopia.
A woman farmer harvests chickpeas in Ethiopia. Photo: Swathi Sridharan, ICRISAT.
New bean varieties were released in collaboration with Uganda's National Agricultural Research Organization and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture to address populations' deficiencies of important nutrients. The release of the five new bean varieties aims to reduce the impacts of malnutrition and anemia, especially in children and expectant mothers in the Ugandan population. Characterized by their higher iron content and tolerance of harsh droughts, the yields are expected to boost health at a low cost.
Beans in Uganda. Photo: CIAT.