Anonymous donor provides seed money for Tropical Grasslands-Forrajes Tropicales Journal
The Tropical Grasslands-Forrajes Tropicales Journal is preparing to publish its fifth issue at the end of this month. The bilingual, peer-reviewed journal has been online for one year, thanks to seed money provided by an anonymous donor in honor of Pepe Toledo, leader of the CIAT Tropical Pastures Program in the 1980s.
The investment provided the capital needed to establish the journal, inspiring the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS) to sponsor the journal for its first 5 years.
The journal resulted from a fusion of Tropical Grasslands, published from 1967 to 2010 by the Tropical Grassland Society of Australia, Inc., with Pasturas Tropicales, published from 1979 to 2007 by the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). In line with CIAT and CGIAR policy, the new journal is published open access – allowing for wide dissemination of knowledge about tropical forages.
Diverse tropical forages, a valuable source of livestock feed, provide an important economic opportunity for the 600 million smallholder farmers who make a living from animal production to improve meat and milk production and raise their incomes. Nearly 21,000 samples of 700 species of such plants collected in 72 countries are held in CIAT’s genebank. Since the late 1980s, CIAT has improved Brachiaria, and it is now widely grown – in Brazil, for example, which has 116 million hectares of sown pastures.
The latest edition of the journal, released in June 2014, builds on a wealth of research on tropical forages for development impact. Readers can benefit from success stories like “Village-based tropical pasture seed production in Thailand and Laos” as well as stories about dynamic work, as in “The rise and fall of Siratro (Macroptilium atropurpureum).”
The journal was established in honor of a man who dedicated his life to researching and promoting tropical forages for the benefit of smallholder farmers – Peruvian scientist José “Pepe” Mauricio Toledo who gained international recognition for his outstanding work. As leader of CIAT’s Tropical Pastures Program from 1980 until his retirement in 1990, he mentored many young scientists, founded the International Tropical Pastures Evaluation Network (RIEPT, for its acronym in Spanish), and designed and implemented methodologies for the evaluation and exchange of forage germplasm for use in Africa, Asia, and the Americas.
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