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  • Pan-African Grain Legume Conference

    The Pan-African Grain Legume Conference, organized by the Legume Innovation Lab and IITA in partnership with PABRA/CIAT, the CG Grain Legume Program, ICRISAT, and local NARS, and held jointly with the World Cowpea Conference, has been tentatively scheduled for the first week of March 2016 in Livingston, Zambia. Please reserve these dates on your 2016 calendars. Link here for more information. Link here to see the IYOP powerpoint.

    Conference information will be updated regularly over the coming months.



  • Host Country Institutional Capacity Strengthening Awards

  • The Management Office of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research in Grain Legumes (Legume Innovation Lab) again invites the submission of Proposals from Principal Investigators (PIs) for activities that will contribute to enhancing the capacity of collaborating Host Country institutions.

    The deadline for receipt of proposals is Monday, February 23, 2015.

    Link here for more information and related documents.


Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Grain Legumes

The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Grain Legumes (formerly the Pulse CRSP) contributes to economic growth and food and nutrition security through knowledge and technology generation that strengthens grain legume (e.g., bean, cowpea, pigeon pea, etc.) value chains and enhances the capacity and sustainability of agriculture research institutions that serve grain legume sectors in developing countries of Africa and Latin America.


Tepary Beans Offer Hope for Hot, Drought Prone Areas Affected by Climate Change
Smallholder bean farmers living in hot, dry agroecological zones in Central America and Haiti have difficulty growing common bean, a staple crop critical for household food security and livelihoods. The tepary bean (Phaseolus acutifolius),

''Seed of improved tepary versus unimproved tepary (top left)

a sister species of common bean grown by Native Americans for more than 5,000 years in semi-arid production systems in Mexico and the Southwest United States, has naturally evolved with resistances to drought and high temperature conditions. This underutilized bean species, which produces seeds similar in shape, color, and taste to common bean, is an alternative crop that can be grown in Continued. Link to full story/Spotlight 1.

Women Farmer Organizations Assume Active Role in Cowpea Seed Multiplication in Burkina Faso
Production of quality seed of improved varieties of cowpea and rural smallholder farmer access to such quality seed at affordable prices


are major constraints to enhancing farmer adoption of the improved varieties necessary to increase on-farm grain legume productivity. Link to full story.

Advances in Understanding and Guiding Farmer Decision-Making Strategies
Poor soil fertility and crop management practices have left thousands of smallholder bean farmers in Uganda and Mozambique struggling to


grow even 10 to 25 percent of their potential crop yield. A Legume Innovation Lab project on Farmer Decision Making Strategies for Improved Soil Fertility Management in Maize–Bean Production Systems. . . , however, is combining soil and social science to bring hope to these farmers—farmers like Angélica A. in the story below—for improved, sustainable crop yields. Link to full story.

Legume Innovation Lab Graduate Student Kelvin Kamfwa
Meet Kelvin Kamfwa, a Legume Innovation Lab-sponsored graduate student at Michigan State University. Kelvin conducts research on plant breeding and genetics research under Jim Kelly, Lead PI of the Legume Innovation Lab project Improving Genetic Yield Potential of Andean Beans with Increased Resistances to Drought and Major Foliar Diseases and Enhanced Biological Nitrogen Fixation (BNF).





Kelvin Kamfwa at MSU‘s bean research fields (l.) and in the lab. (rt.)

Throughout the spring of 2014, an MSU film crew documented the important work Kelvin engages in every day. Link here to learn more about his work. 

New Pest Management Grant to Improve Cowpea Yields in West Africa

The Legume Innovation Lab at Michigan State University has received a $1.45 million grant for a three-year research project to develop integrated pest management (IPM) solutions utilizing biologicals to sustainably manage cowpea pests in smallholder farms in five West African countries.


Continued. Link to full story/Spotlight 2.

Rural UgandaTwo men inspecting cropsPerson holding beansWoman holding beans

Legume Scholars Program, Update
The application deadline for the Legume Scholars Program has been reached and the application process is now closed. More than 200 applications were received and are under review.

The Legume Innovation Lab thanks all of its researchers and collaborators for their enthusiastic response to the call for nominations. Information on the Legume Scholars Program is available here.

Legume Innovation Lab Launches Facebook Page
The Legume Innovation Lab is on Facebook. Please “like” our page here to receive updates and stories on legume research.

Legume Innovation Lab on Twitter
The Legume Innovation Lab has launched a Twitter account named Legume InnovationLab. Follow our feed to receive the latest updates on the Lab and research and development work related to the legume sector.