Biofortified cassava

2006

An estimated 70 million people obtain more than 500 calories per day from cassava. With its productivity on marginal soils; ability to withstand disease, drought, and pests; and flexible harvest dates, cassava is a remarkably adaptable and hearty crop, consumed in areas where drought, poverty, and malnutrition are prevalent... The strategy of HarvestPlus research on cassava emphasizes developing genotypes with high concentrations of provitamin A carotenoids, mainly ß-carotene, in the roots of agronomically superior varieties, then sharing the germplasm among collaborating agricultural research systems in the developing world. A less extensive research program is focused on breeding for high iron and zinc content.