Monday, August 19, 2019

Making inroads for food security through cutting-edge farming technology

“We could never imagine before today a farming equipment and technology exhibition being held in our village”, said Jadav Basumatary, a progressive farmer from Barkachari Gaon, block Kathiatoli, district Nagaon in Assam; a scenic state, south of the eastern Himalayas along the Brahmaputra and Barak River valleys in India.

It is so encouraging to see so many new machines that could reinvigorate farming in our villages, making it profitable and maybe even generate more employment” he adds, looking over at the latest farm machinery lined up at the farm mechanization and technology exhibition organized in June by IRRI and partners under project ‘Assam Agribusiness and Rural Transformation’ (APART).

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

IRRI facilitates productive partnerships between farmer cooperatives and rice seller in Cambodia

29 July 2019, Siem Reap ~ The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) continues its strong support for the Cambodian government’s efforts to bolster their country’s rice sector.

Last week, IRRI and the Provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (PDAFF) helped facilitate the contract signing of 16 rice agricultural cooperatives with AMRU Rice Company, one of the country’s fast-growing rice brands.

A total of twenty contracts were signed by AMRU President Oknha Song Saron and the farmer representatives of the cooperatives. Four were for the supply of quality seeds, and the rest were for paddy rice production and purchase.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

IRRI, PhilRice, and JIRCAS hold WeRise training for researchers

Researchers from the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) received training on WeRise (Weather-rice-nutrient integrated decision support system), an information and communication technology for development (ICT4D) tool on 22-26 July 2019 at PhilRice in Nueva Ecija, Philippines.  Through an IRRI-Japan collaborative research project, WeRise was developed and piloted in Indonesia. It integrates localized seasonal climate predictions and real-time weather data with a crop growth model to provide advisories on the best time to plant, fertilizer application schedule, and the suitable varieties for planting. Under the IRRI, PhilRice and JIRCAS joint research agreement (JRA), WeRise is being localized to suit rainfed rice areas in the Philippines.

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Vietnam highlights climate-smart rice production in new training modules

The training materials were presented to the representatives of the different provincial extension offices.
Photo: NAEC 

12 July 2019, Ha Nam province, Vietnam – The National Agriculture Extension Center (NAEC), under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam, formally launched the training materials on climate-smart production. The initiative was carried out with the support of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security in Southeast Asia (CCAFS SEA), and the Climate and Clean Air Coalition. The project aims to strengthen the capacity of extension workers in mainstreaming climate change adaptation and mitigation in rice production in the country.

Dr. Tran Van Khoi, director of NAEC, recognized the development of the training materials as a significant achievement of the one-year collaboration of NAEC, IRRI and CCAFS. He emphasized that “the training materials can be considered as an innovative approach, as they provide comprehensive guidelines to trainers on the delivery of the lessons, which can be later applied by NAEC on other equally important agriculture topics.”

Transition of Rice Crop Manager Advisory Service to the Philippines Department of Agriculture kicks off

The Philippines’ Department of Agriculture prepares to take the lead of the Rice Crop Manager (RCM) Advisory Service from IRRI, through the RCM Advisory Service Transition Workshop on July 24-25, 2019. Key stakeholders actively participated in strengthening inter-agency collaboration that is a vital component of the project “RCM Philippines Phase 3: Transition to Operational Sustainability for Research and Dissemination from IRRI to DA” which becomes official after 2021.

The overall project objective is to increase the capacity and institutional readiness for the integration and transition of RCM research, dissemination, operations and IT processes within the appropriate DA agencies towards full interoperability with other DA-funded projects with support from IRRI. In order to achieve this objective, project activities include system optimization of RCM Advisory Service; joint programming of IRRI and DA staff; and management of source codes and databases transfer from IRRI to DA in 2021. One of the first steps to do this is to get the commitment and buy-in of key stakeholders in this process.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

IRRI Bangladesh wins best poster presentation at 2019 KSBS SABRAO International Conference

Scientist MK Hossain from the Bangladesh Office of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) won the best poster presentation at the 2019 International Conference on Plant Breeding for Sustainable Development, which was held last July 2-5 2019 in Gwangju City, South Korea.

The conference, organized by the The Korean Society for Breeding Science (KSBS) and the Society for the Advancement of Breeding Research in Asia and Oceania (SABRAO), aims to promote scientific and technical cooperation among scientists working in plant breeding and genetics in order to contribute towards progress in agricultural production and food security in the region.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Seed quality managers and technicians enhance skills on seed conservation

In partnership with the Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT), IRRI hosted the Seed Quality Management (SQM) Workshop on 10-14 June, 2019, with IRRI’s Jae-Sung Lee, deputy overall management of IRRI Genebank, convening the event.

The SQM led by Dr. Fiona Hay, a former IRRI scientist and now working at Aarhus University, Denmark, is one of core activities in the CGIAR Genebank Platform. It pursues to improve seed quality and longevity through better genebank practices based on scientific evidences.

“It was a great opportunity to interact with other international/ national genebank staff. The outputs of the workshop will influence the future direction of seed conservation for world-important crop species”, said Dr. Lee.

The workshop resulted in four proposed SQM projects: 1) automation and image analysis; 2) seed longevity; 3) post-harvest handling; and 4) seed dormancy planned for the next phase of SQM from 2020. Better genebank operations and improved seed quality through those projects will maximize the impact of research, thus adheres to the IRRI’s theme–‘Harnessing rice genetic diversity to accelerate impact’.