Wednesday, March 19, 2008

IRAN & A Weapon Of Mass Destruction

The fungal strain was named for its discovery in Uganda in 1999. - The disease spreads by wind-blown fungal spores. Planting highly resistant wheat varieties in the southern United States where stem rust fungus can survive winter could prevent the disease from taking hold in the South and then spreading to the rest of the country.Ug99 has overcome most of the stem rust resistance genes bred into wheat varieties during the past several decades. Last year, ARS Cereal Disease Laboratory (CDL) plant pathologist Yue Jin confirmed a new, even more virulent variant of Ug99 in Kenya. His colleague, geneticist Les Szabo, also at the CDL in St. Paul, Minn., leads the stem rust genome project. Caption & Image Credit: Haber7.com

IRAN & A Weapon Of Mass Destruction

It’s true and can be mentioned in the same breath. The fields in IRAN are producing a weapon of mass destruction and it is not what you think.

This weapon of mass destruction is aimed directly at IRAN itself and will effect countries that are located East, it is biological and it kills wheat crops on a massive basis.

The weapon is a fungal wheat stem “rust” that is carried upon the wind and attacks whole fields of wheat laying them to waste leading to food shortages and greatly increased food prices.

Up to 80 per cent of all Asian and African wheat varieties are susceptible to the fungus, and major wheat-producing nations to Iran’s east – such as Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan – should be on high alert, FAO warned. Image Credit: NewScientist

The wheat fungus [strain] first emerged in Uganda in 1999 and is therefore called Ug99. The Ug99 strain found in Yemen was already more virulent than the one found in East Africa. Ethiopia and Kenya had serious wheat rust epidemics in 2007 with considerable losses.

Harvesting wheat. Crop yeilds are expected to drop dramatically in Iran due to UG99 - a strain of virulent fungus that attacheds itself to the stems of growing wheat. Image Credit: Getty

This excerpted SeedQuest taken from a statement released by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) –

First report of wheat stem rust, strain Ug99, in Iran

By SeedQuest – March 5, 2008

Wheat killer detected in Iran - dangerous fungus on the move from East Africa to the Middle East

A new and virulent wheat fungus, previously found in East Africa and Yemen, has moved to major wheat-growing areas in Iran, FAO reported today [5 Mar 2008]. The fungus is capable of wreaking havoc to wheat production by destroying entire fields. Countries east of Iran, like Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan, all major wheat producers, are most threatened by the fungus and should be on high alert, FAO said.

Wheat is a major food crop in the world and sustains the majority of the world's population. Wheat fields occupy more of the earth's surface than do fields of any other food crop. Stem rust is one of the most important wheat diseases limiting production in many areas of the world. The disease has been important throughout the ages. The Romans, in order to please the rust god, Robigus, held a festival called Robigalia. Image Credit: USDA

It is estimated that as much as 80 percent of all wheat varieties planted in Asia and Africa are susceptible to wheat stem rust (_Puccinia graminis_). The spores of wheat rust are mostly carried by wind over long distances and across continents. "The detection of the wheat rust fungus [strain Ug99] in Iran is very worrisome," said Shivaji Pandey, director of FAO's Plant Production and Protection Division. "The fungus is spreading rapidly and could seriously lower wheat production in countries at direct risk. Affected countries and the international community have to ensure that the spread of the disease gets under control in order to reduce the risk to countries that are already hit by high food prices."

The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has informed FAO that the fungus has been detected in some localities in Broujerd and Hamedan in western Iran. Laboratory tests have confirmed the presence of the fungus. Iran said it will enhance its research capacity to face the new infection and develop new wheat varieties resistant to the disease.
Reference Here>>

We, at MAXINE, are always looking for the upside, so the question that begs to be asked is:

Does, or better, can this fungal "rust" be made to attach itself to Opium/Heroin Poppies like the fields grown in Afghanistan? Huhmmmmmmm!


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