Maize project supports partners in COVID-19 response

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The long wait for registration As the world continues the fight to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic, food security in Africa, as well as in other parts of the world, needs to be given extra attention. More than 70% of the rural population in West and Central Africa depend on subsistence farming, and this is already under threat from climate change.

May and June are the most critical months for planting maize and other cereals in this region. The COVID-19 lockdown is  forcing many African governments to develop guidelines that keep agricultural value chains alive while adhering to public health guidelines.

The Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project, which is jointly implemented by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and IITA, has developed and deployed multiple stress-tolerant and productive maize varieties to help farmers adapt to climate change. CIMMYT and IITA are working in collaboration with diverse national and private sector partners in eight countries in Eastern and Southern Africa and four countries in West Africa.

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