New seeds approved to boost rice yield
With the aim of increasing rice crop yield, nine hybrid varieties and one long grain rice variety were approved on Wednesday for the cash crop in the upcoming Kharif season.
The hybrid varieties were developed privately, while the long-grain variety was developed by the Government of Punjab’s Soil Salinity Research Institute a researcher from the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) said.
The varieties were approved by the PARC’s Rice Variety Evaluation Committee at a meeting presided over by the Committee Chairman, Dr. Imtiaz Hussain.
PARC chairman Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali, and representatives from national and multinational seed companies and federal and provincial research institutions attended the meeting.
The chairman of PARC stressed the importance of quality seeds to improve farmers’ productivity and profitability and instructed seed companies to provide farmers with high-quality seeds.
The PARC was committed to playing its part in assessing varieties transparently in collaboration with the national agricultural research system, said Dr. Hussain.
According to the researchers, the new varieties would replace most low-yielding varieties in the forthcoming Kharif season.
According to the Rice Research Institute, hybrid seeds yield at least 15 to 20 percent higher than the inbred variety cultivated under similar conditions.
Pakistan’s share of the global rice trade is about 9.10 PC, contributing more than 2 billion dollars a year to the national treasury, according to data from the institute.
Rice, the country’s second-largest cash crop, accounts for 11% of the total area under cultivation. Since 2000, there have been 10 to 12 rice varieties cultivated in the country.