How Israeli scientists are saving crops

Researchers at Israel's Weizmann Institute found a sustainable way to eliminate a parasitic crop killer that caused hunger and famine in sub-Saharan Africa.

March 7, 2019 03:56
Weizmann Institute

Researchers help plants at the Weizmann Institute of Science. (photo credit: WEIZMANN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE)


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The Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot continues to be a leading innovator, as highlighted in a new video series from the institute. Dave Doneson, CEO of the American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science, spoke about challenges facing the world's food supply.

"In Israel’s earliest days, Weizmann scientists invented a non-toxic method for waxing orange so they could be shipped overseas," Doneson explained. "Since those days, the Institute has continued to apply its plant research expertise toward improving global food security." 

He detailed the research of Weizmann Professor Jonathan Gressel whose research helped find an environmentally-friendly way to deal with witchweed, a parasitic weed that was destroying half of the crops in Kenya and neighboring African nations. "His discovery lowered the amount of chemicals used and eliminated the need for crop spraying," Doneson said.

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