In pursuit of a solution for maize lethal necrosis disease in East Africa
Since its outbreak and rapid spread in 2011, maize lethal necrosis disease (MLND) has continued to wreak havoc in farmer’s fields across Tanzania and Kenya. The disease has clearly emerged as a big threat to maize production in the two countries and currently most of the commercially available maize varieties are susceptible to the disease.
With the support of Africa RISING, efforts have been in progress since 2012 to develop maize varieties that are resistant to MLND and researchers are also seeking to understand MLND epidemiology to develop suitable and integrated solutions to manage the threat posed by the disease. Some promising maize hybrids have been identified by the Africa RISING project team, but more testing still needs to be done to validate their response to MLND in the disease hotspot areas under different agronomic and cultural practices.
In this five-minute video, Bright Jumbo, the Africa RISING research lead on the management of maize lethal necrosis disease, explains the progress made by the team as at March 2015.