LAHORE-Pakistani and Chinese agricultural scientists have developed a new high-yielding and heat-tolerant rice seed which will be available for open commercial cultivation from the next sowing season.
New ‘Extra long grain super hybrid rice’, which has been developed by Longping Hi-Tech Industries China and Guard Agricultural Research & Services (Pvt) Ltd, will double per acre yield to 90-100 maunds per acre from existing 30 to 40 acres as compared to competitor existing varieties.
Both companies, which already have the honour to introduce hybrid rice seed of coarse varieties in Pakistan, held a limited commercial trial this year spreading over 200 acres of land at various places of the country which resulted in having a yield of 90-100 maunds per acre at different places. Guard Agricultural Research & Services (Pvt) Ltd., held a field demonstration to showcase the new seed, its technology and the produce from the trial fields to farmers at a village near Pakpattan the other day and informed the growers that the new variety can attain maturity in 80-85 days and gives double yield using the same amount of nutrients and inputs as used by the existing varieties.
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Momin Ali Malik, senior executive of the company, speaking on this occasion said that their company is working to bring such seeds to market which can ensure prosperity for the growers and food security for the country’s ever-increasing population. He said they partnered with their Chinese counterparts in 1998 and since then they are putting in efforts to bring high-yielding varieties and have tolerance against climate change as well. He said their research team is bigger than their sales team as they believe that only research-oriented activities can produce the required results in the seed sector. He said Pakistan’s export of rice had touched new heights but to maintain this momentum, the country needs more per acre yield by using the existing resources. He claimed that the new variety can produce more than 100 maunds per acre provided taken good care of it. Final data is being completed as harvesting is still underway at different places, Momin added. Head of Research of the Chinese Company in Pakistan, Mr Long threw light on hectic research activities being carried out in the country.
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He said that they plant 12000 lines every year and make hybrids by using local varieties and Chinese material. He said 11 varieties have so far been approved for cultivation by the Pakistani government since 2012. He said the new variety took 3-4 years of testing with a 14 mm length after cooking and an 8 mm length as uncooked rice.
The event was also addressed by the GM Guard (Agri) Rizwan Younis, Chaudhry Muhammad Afzal (grower) and Usman Khaliq (grower) who shared their experience about the new variety