Cassava originated in South America and was introduced to Africa in relatively recent times. It is known to be a very drought-tolerant crop with the ability to yield even when planted in poor soils. When cassava was first grown in Africa, it was used for subsidiary purposes though it is now considered to be one of the most important food staple crops on the continent. Its production is moving toward an industrialized system in which plant material is used for a variety of products including starch , flour, and animal feed.
As cassava is vegetatively propagated, it is particularly vulnerable to viruses and thus Cassava geminiviruses lead to great economic loss each year. When these infect a host plant, the plant’s defense system is triggered. Plants use gene silencing to suppress viral replication, though begomoviruses have evolved a counter-acting suppressor protein against this natural host defense. Because different species of begomovirus produce different variants of this suppressor protein, co-infection by multiple species typically leads to more severe disease symptoms.
Initially following infection of a cassava geminivirus in cassava, systemic symptoms develop. These symptoms include chlorotic mosaic of the leaves, leaf distortion, and stunted growth. Infection can be overcome by the plant especially when a rapid onset of symptoms occurs. A slow onset of disease development usually correlates with death of the plant.
Though the cassava-infecting geminiviruses causes most of their economic damage in cassava, they are able to infect other plants. The host range depends on the species of virus and most are able to be transmitted and to cause disease on other plants.
CONTROL STRATEGIES for cassava mosaic disease include sanitation and plant resistance. In this case, sanitation means using cuttings from healthy plants to start with a healthy plot and maintaining that healthy plot by identifying unhealthy plants and immediately removing them. This strategy does not protect them from being inoculated by whiteflies, but research shows that the virus is more aggressive in plants infected from contaminated cuttings than by insect vectors.
Last week I was on a visit to some major cassava farmers in Ijebu-Imushin, my visit was based on the “scarcity of cassava on the open market”. Most importantly, Garri, a major product from cassava which was formally sold at N600 per 4litr rubber earlier this year is now presently selling at N800 and above (depending on the quality).
Like I thought as much, the major hike in price of Garri & other cassava products was said to rest on three major factors.
2. Low investment on cultivation.
3. Instability of pest control.
The Last two factors are the major cause of cassava scarcity and low turnover over late last year & Early this year till present.
My next post will be on the major pest fighting cassava’s optimal yield. ” Cassava Mosaic”.
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Business / 13th August 2016
Want To Revive Your Failing Business? These Five Steps Should Help
by Ikenna Nwachukwu
usinesses fail. But in many instances, enterprises which go down-under could have been saved if their managers knew what the problem with the business was, and how to tackle them.
If you think your business is in dire straits and you need to get it out of the ‘danger zone’, then you should take these five steps.
Assess the Situation
It is dangerous to assume that you know what the cause of your business’s dwindling fortunes is. Carry out a thorough examination of the enterprise- its accounts, marketing strategy, production efficiency and all its other aspects. Wherever loopholes or trouble points are found, they should be noted in detail; along with the possible effects they have had (or could have) on the business.
Lay out your Strategy
Problem-solving is easier and more effective when it follows a definite, well laid out plan. Just like an army advances against its enemy target in line with a strategy. For you as an entrepreneur, the strategy should note the course of action you need to take in order to halt the fall of the business and make it turn the corner for good. Cost cutting measures usually come first but be sure that your attempts at reducing costs do not eliminate valuable resources that actually contribute positively to the business. The approach to be taken depends on the nature of the fault(s) besetting the business as identified in step 1.
Act Speedily and Precisely
The execution of the drawn up strategy is just as important as laying it out. You should be quick and exact in implementation.
Involve Your Employees
Make sure your employees also believe in the business. Carrying them along is not just about trying to pay them on time, but giving them a sense of belonging. Let them know that they have a stake in it, by conveying this message to them in words, and in your general relationship with them. This will make them more willing to stay the course and roll up their sleeves along with
you to get the business back on track. You will need them- hiring new staff when things are rough for your company isn’t really the wisest thing to do in most cases. You will have to pay more, or get less skilled employees to fill in the positions left vacant by sacked workers.
You are more likely to succeed at bringing your business back from the brink if you view things from the optimistic angle. Being positive helps keep in focus what could be possible, the improved conditions you are striving towards. A negative outlook focuses your energies on the faults and doesn’t really help you set your eyes on the better future you seek for your business. You will not be able to attain a height you have not envisioned. That would be tantamount to wandering- something you cannot afford to do if you really want to save your business.
You probably always thought that prospecting came before closing, but to create an opportunity, you must be able to ask for and gain the first two commitments you need to move a lead into true prospect status: the commitment of your prospect’s time and the commitment to explore working together. Unfortunately, both are becoming more and more difficult to get.
The business environment has changed radically over the past two decades, thanks to globalization, the Internet, and some major recessions. As a result, we have had to make drastic alterations in the way we sell.
Globalization has forced us to become competitors in the world marketplace. You can no longer be “the only game in town” when the “town” is the whole world.
The Internet has shifted the balance of power. Whereas sellers used to control information, the Internet has given buyers access to more in formation and more choices than ever. And it is easier for buyers to find someone who looks a lot like you to sell them what they need if they don’t believe you are treating them fairly.
Making matters worse, the United States has just suffered through a decade that began and ended with major recessions. During these downturns, companies focused on cost cutting as a means to survive — a practice that continues unabated. Purchasing departments and chief financial officers have gained power, and salespeople now face buyers who are more concerned about price than they previously were. I call this new buyer psychology “post recessionary stress disorder.” It causes everyone to focus on price rather than cost.
It’s harder to create opportunities — yet without opportunities, you can’t produce results. That’s why you need a prospecting plan. But even the best plan is useless if you don’t put it to work. Here’s how to make prospecting a priority:
1) Put prospecting first.
You can’t cram prospecting. It must be a daily discipline. Block out time every day for this activity.
2) Be consistent in your efforts.
You don’t control when your dream client might become dissatisfied enough with his current situation to make a change. You might call every week for years, only to have your meeting requests refused every time.
But as soon as the prospect becomes even slightly unhappy, your request will suddenly be granted. You can’t predict when that might happen, so you can never go away. Keep calling your dream clients, no matter what.
3) Vary your approach.
Most salespeople prospect using the one method that feels most comfortable to them. But that’s not necessarily the method of communication your prospective clients prefer.
They pick the channel that they respond to, so you need to use all of them. This includes the telephone, even if you are young and hate cold calling. This also includes Linkedln and other social media, even if you have a few gray hairs and aren’t all that interested in these new tools for communication. Use all of the tools at your disposal until you find what’s best for each prospect.
4) Separate research from prospecting.
Research is one type of work and prospecting is another; blending the two slows your prospecting. Speed your progress by doing research separately from prospecting. Take the time to build your list of dream clients and all of the potential contacts you need within those companies. Then, and only then, should you do your prospecting. If you need to do more research, invest the time required, and then get back to the work of connecting.
5) Eliminate distractions.
When it’s time for you to do your prospecting, turn off your e-mail, the Internet, and your smartphone. Focus. Tell your peers that you have a newfound discipline and you need their support; you’ll catch up with them later.
Hang a sign on your door that says, “DO NOT DISTURB! PROSPECTING!” If you do not have a door, use string to hang this sign over your desk. The more focused you are on prospecting, the greater your results will be, and the faster they will occur.
6) Make the plan your own.
Don’t gauge the amount of effort you need to put into prospecting by looking at what other salespeople do. I know a salesperson who easily books 40 percent of the contacts she connects with. Yet if someone else made as few calls as she did, he would probably fail because her combination of approach/product/price and other factors is not the same as his.
You have to invest the time necessary for you. Do what you need to do and stick to your plan. Never mind what somebody else is doing.
7) Focus on the outcome.
Through all the ups and downs of prospecting, always keep your eye on the prize: a meeting. Know that you’ll get those meetings if you persevere.
There’s always something you can do that seems more important than prospecting. The work that shows up on your desk or streams in via your telephone and e‑mail in‑box always feels more urgent. That’s because prospecting never really appears urgent — until it is. Unfortunately, once you urgently need to prospect, it’s already too late to do anything about it. Prospecting requires a lot of discipline, no doubt about it. But self‑discipline is the cornerstone of success — in sales and in life.
You must do enough prospecting to create the opportunities you need to make your quota. You also need to prospect enough to build a pipeline that allows you to lose opportunities and still make your number based on your close rate. Prospecting is the discipline of sales champions.
Editor’s note: This post has been excerpted from The Only Sales Guide You’ll Ever Need by Anthony Iannarino with permission of Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © Anthony Iannarino, 2016. You can preorder the book