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Groundbreaking rice varieties to help uplift farmers: Ali

Rice Variety Evaluation Committee (VEC) meeting at the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) Headquarters in Islamabad was led by Dr. Imtiaz Hussain, Member of PARC’s Plant Sciences Division. During the meeting, Dr. Hussain underscored PARC’s dedication to assisting both public and private sector institutes as well as seed companies in the evaluation and introduction of rice hybrids and varieties.

Attendees included representatives from the Federal Seed Certification, national and multinational seed companies, provincial seed councils, as well as rice scientists from research institutes at the provincial and federal levels.

The committee members were provided with a comprehensive overview of fifty-one proposals for rice hybrids/varieties by Dr. Muhammad Yousuf, National Coordinator Rice of PARC. Following thorough discussions and careful considerations, the VEC recommended 14 high-yielding rice hybrids from private seed companies for the cultivation in Pakistan.

Furthermore, the National Institute of Genomics and Biotechnology (NIGAB) of PARC introduced four fine rice varieties that demonstrated significantly higher grain yield compared to the currently grown varieties. These fine rice varieties were also endorsed by the VEC for cultivation in Pakistan, with the aim of enhancing farmers’ productivity and profitability.

In addition to the above recommendations, the VEC also suggested the cultivation of Sona Super Basmati, a long-grain variety measuring 9.5 mm, and Vital Super Basmati developed by RRI, Kala Shah Kaku. Vital Super Basmati is notable for its high levels of zinc and iron enrichment.

During a meeting with rice scientists, Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali, Chairman PARC, expressed his confidence in the positive impact that the introduction of these high-yielding rice varieties would have on rice productivity and the profitability of farmers across the country.

Dr. Waseem ul Hassan, representing the Ministry of Food Security and Research applauded the efforts of rice scientists in Pakistan for their achievement in releasing the biofortified Basmati rice variety, along with the four high-yielding fine rice varieties.

Furthermore, representatives from seed companies lauded PARC for establishing a transparent testing procedure for evaluating rice hybrids and varieties, recognizing the subsequent benefits it brings to farmers and the rice sector in Pakistan. QR Code

Published Date: June 20, 2023

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