Improving crops in sub-Saharan Africa is one of IITA’s top priorities. Using sophisticated genetic engineering or selective breeding, IITA develops a wide range of staple crop varieties for different situations and purposes. Improved crops can have more farmer-preferred traits like higher yields or desired coloration. Other improved crop varieties have a greater adaptability to a changing climatic, biological, or physical environment.
In addition, our scientists produce biofortified crops that address hunger and micronutrient deficiencies particularly in children and women. These diverse crops can also have a longer shelf life, need less time to grow, or have better disease and pest resistance making them highly valuable to farmers.
Our work with improving crops through Biotechnology and Genetic Improvement is one of the cornerstones of IITA and continues to be an important focus and an important source of positive results.