Steve Long speaks with Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal, at a reception in Chicago.

Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal, shines a light on women’s empowerment and ending extreme poverty

RIPE Director Stephen Long was invited to discuss the RIPE project with Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal.

Picture of ground breaking

New greenhouse coming to U of I's Research Park

A new state-of-the-art greenhouse is coming to the University of Illinois' Research Park.

By: Haydee Clotter || Illinois Fox News

A sign at Research Park that says "Consistently Ground Breaking"

Research Park plans greenhouse for dynamic agriculture project

A group from the University and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will break ground on a new greenhouse in Research Park. 

By: Daily Illini Staff 

Greenhouse mock-up

Research Park to welcome new greenhouse

Representatives from Illinois and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will break ground on a new, state-of-the-art greenhouse.

By: WCIA News

Photosynthesis illustration

Bill Gates wants to hack photosynthesis

A new video highlights some efforts Gates is funding to make plants grow faster.

By: Ben Paynter || Fast Company

Photosynthesis illustration

Tuning up photosynthesis to feed the world

An international team is working to tune-up photosynthesis in our most important crops to increase worldwide food productivity. 

By: Bill Gates || Gates Notes

Bill Gates meets with UKAid

UK aid partners with Gates Foundation to tackle global food insecurity

UK aid is tackling global food insecurity through a new project with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Drought Solutions

8 innovative drought solutions that we can count 0n

A review on anti-drought measures that are in development and in actual use.

By: Kashyap Vyas || Interesting Engineering 

Reisanbau in Vietnam: In drei Jahrzehnten müssen doppelt so viele Nahrungsmittel produziert werden wie heute

Kampf gegen Hunger Satte zehn Milliarden

Die Weltgemeinschaft steht vor einer gewaltigen Aufgabe: Bis 2050 muss sie fast doppelt so viel Nahrung produzieren wie heute - ohne zusätzliche Ressourcen. Drei Forscher erklären, wie das gelingen könnte.

By:  | Spiegel Online

Headshot of Lisa Ainsworth

RIPE Researcher Lisa Ainsworth honored with NAS Prize

Elizabeth (Lisa) Ainsworth will receive the 2019 NAS Prize in Food and Agriculture Sciences.

By: The National Academy of Sciences

sun, sky, wheat

How can we feed 11 billion people?

The challenge to produce enough food to feed our growing population.

By: BBC World Service | The Inquiry

Steve Burgess collecting data in the field with Steve Long.

Episode 024: Improving Photosynthesis with Dr. Steven Burgess

Meet plant biologist Dr. Steven Burgess in this podcast and find out the skills needed to be a scientist. 

By: NGSNavigators

Senator Durbin tours the RIPE project's growth chambers.

Senator Durbin calls for more research funding after touring RIPE project

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin visited the RIPE project and said he hopes to increase federal funding for scientific research.

By: Jim Meadows | Illinois Public Media 

Two scientists pose in greenhouse

International Women’s Day 2019: Spotlight on Scientists of the RIPE project

As part of SIN USA’s celebration of International Women’s Day 2019, SIN Chicago profiled four early-career scientists from the RIPE project.

Screenshot from France24 news segment.

The high-tech food chain

From farmlands to kitchens, technology is playing a pivotal role in ensuring better yields and disease-free food. 

By: France 24

Two scientists measure photosynthesis.

Hacking photosynthesis to re-engineer crop plants and feed the world

The next 'green revolution' will necessitate a radical redesign of how plants work.

By: Quirks & Quarks | CBC Radio

Don Ort in field

How to feed the world by 2050? Recent breakthrough boosts plant growth by 40 percent.

Recent advances to address hunger through agricultural discovery will be highlighted at this year’s annual meeting of the AAAS.


U.S. researchers find novel way to produce bigger plants

Photosynthesis holds the key to the air we breathe and the food we eat. But it’s not as efficient as it could be.

soybean field

Illinois research combats food insecurity

Established in 2012, RIPE was created to engineer plants to help solve food insecurity. Since it began, it has received more than $70 million in funding.

By: University of IllinoisStories of Impact

Cowpea seeds

As Nigeria makes final move to commercialise Bt cowpea

After nine years of intensive trials of the Bacillus thuringiences (Bt) cowpea, Nigeria finally begins the final processes towards commercialisation.

By: Leadership, a Nigerian newspaper

soyean field

RIPE project aims to help farmers grow more with less

Lab breakthroughs could lead to greater crop production, prepare for future population growth.

By: Daniel Grant |

Don Ort, Cassava, RIPE

Wired In: Donald Ort

Wired In: Meet Donald Ort, the Robert Emerson Professor of Plant Science and Crop Sciences at the University of Illinois.

By: Paul Wood | The News-Gazette

tobacco plants, irrigation line

Plant scientists have found a way to 'hack' photosynthesis. Here's why that's a big deal

If the preliminary research pans out, we may have a new way to feed the world's growing population.

By: Denise Chow | NBC News MACH

Don Ort, Paul South, Amanda Cavanagh, tobacco, snap freeze

Scientists tweak photosynthesis and boost crop growth by 40 percent

Without photosynthesis, life as we know it wouldn't exist on earth.

Paul South, tobacco plants, LI-6400XT portable photosynthesis system

Plants botch photosynthesis 20% of the time. Fixing that could change agriculture

Our oxygen-rich air is confusing as hell to a plant.

Amanda Cavanagh, Paul South, Don Ort

Can hacking plants feed the world? The research looks good

Plants are good at what they do — turning sunlight into food. However, some researchers have found the leaf world could improve, and that could have a major effect on the world’s growing population.

By: Leadership, a Nigerian newspaper

Man with tobacco seedlings

Scientists improve on photosynthesis by genetically engineering plants

Ever since Thomas Malthus issued his dire prediction in 1789 that population growth would always exceed food supply, scientists have worked to prove him wrong. 

By: Julia Rosen | Los Angeles Times

Person uses a machine called a LI-COR to measure photosynthesis on a plant.

Scientists have 'hacked photosynthesis' in search of more productive crops

There's a big molecule, a protein, inside the leaves of most plants. It's called Rubisco.

By: Dan Charles | National Public Radio (NPR)

aerial, field trial, tobacco

Genetic modification turbocharges photosynthesis and drastically improves crop growth

“That’s our goal, to make a crop that has a solution to all photosynthetic problems,” study author Amanda Cavanagh, postdoctoral researcher at the University of Illinois, told Gizmodo. 

Amanda Cavanagh, tobacco seedlings, greenhouse

Reclaiming lost calories: Tweaking photosynthesis boosts crop yields

Improving crop yields to grow more food on less land is not a new challenge. But as the global population grows and diets change, the issue is becoming more urgent.

Soybean plant in sunlight

Fixing a flaw in photosynthesis could massively boost food production

Intelligent design has triumphed where evolution has mostly failed. Biologists have boosted the biomass of tobacco by around 40 per cent by compensating for a fundamental flaw in photosynthesis.

By: Michael Le Page | New Scientist

tobacco plants

Engineered plants without photorespiration ‘glitch’ could help feed millions in coming decades

“With changing diets, increased urbanization—70 percent of world population by 2050—and the estimated 9 to 11 billion people that will be living by the second half of this century, it is estimated that food production needs to increase by as much as 70-100 percent to supply enough food to meet demand. ” South is one of the researchers who has made what could be a major breakthrough in boosting plant production.

tobacco plants

Gene engineers make super-size plants that are 40% larger

Researchers hope to create a new “green revolution” by improving photosynthesis.

By : Antonio Regalado | MIT Technology Review

A farmer harvests tobacco leaves at a plantation in the valley of Vinales, in the western Cuban province of Pinar del Rio, January 27, 2015. Picture taken January 27, 2015. REUTERS/Pilar Olivares

Breakthrough in plant engineering could boost productivity, feed millions more

The yield of many staple crops could be boosted by 40 percent by a new process that adjusts the way they turn sunlight into energy.

By: Thin Lei Win | Thomson Reuters Foundation

Two hands hold a tobacco seedling.

Genetically modified 'shortcut' boosts plant growth by 40%

Scientists in the U.S. have engineered tobacco plants that can grow up to 40% larger than normal in field trials.

By: Matt McGrath | BBC News

tobacco plants, flowers

Improve photosynthesis and increase crop yield

Bioengineering corrects defects in photosynthesis in tobacco and increases crop yield by 40%.

By: Katherine Bourzac | Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN)