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In the Great Lakes region of Africa, millions of people rely on cassava as a vital part of their diet and economic security. The plant’s starchy root can be used in a variety of food products, similar to the way potatoes are used in other parts of the world. While cassava crops generally thrive in poor soil and drought conditions, two major diseases are attacking the plants in East and Central Africa, reducing food supplies and farming families’ ability to generate income. Intel is helping fight the plant diseases as a partner in the Great Lakes Cassava Initiative (GLCI), a project being implemented by Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA),and local partners. Through GLCI, farmers are learning how to recognize and respond to cassava mosaic and brown streak diseases, and disease-tolerant cassava planting material is being provided to more than a million farming families. Crucial to GLCI’s success are the education of field agents and farmer groups, collection of data on the spread of the disease, and dissemination of healthy planting material. To train farmers and collect data, CRS staff and partners use low-cost, rugged laptops supported by Intel. The laptops are designed for tough field work and can operate in environments with limited or no power and Internet access. Read the full Intel® Technology Solution Fights Hunger at its Roots in Kenya Case Study.
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