Thousands of historical posts on the topic of dairy farming & livestock can be found in farming Facebook groups in sub-Saharan Africa. These posts often contain detailed reports of livestock disease as well as queries and comments about productivity and management concerns but as yet they remain unanalyzed. The project proposes to combine social media data with ILRI data to create an open-source platform to analyze and visualize emerging livestock disease outbreaks and related issues in Kenya, and disseminate this information through Farm.ink’s chatbot service.
Wheat yellow rust, caused by Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (PST), is currently considered the most damaging wheat disease globally, with yield losses sometimes higher than 60%. This project aims to develop and mainstream an affordable, mobile in-field pathogenomics platform called MARPLE (Mobile And Real-time PLant disEase) to revolutionize crop pathogen surveillance and diagnostics in real time. It will rely on the MinION mobile genome sequencer platform and assess its deployment in situ in Ethiopia.