Tuesday, March 19, 2013

China: Green Super Rice project launches second phase

The Green Super Rice (GSR) Project formally launched its second phase in a meeting opened by David Bergvinson of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).

Dr. Bergvinson cited the project's expanding partnerships and stated the main goal of the meeting, which was to develop a sound seed road map, or SRM, for each country covered. The project aims to benefit 500,000 resource-poor farmers from China, other parts of Asia, and Africa.

Participants came from Chinese institutions, the BMGF, AfricaRice, IRRI, and NARES in Asia and Africa and were welcomed by Jiayang Li, president of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), which hosted the meeting. “The more people involved, the greater the achievements will be,” Dr. Li said.

The meeting brought project stakeholders onto a common platform to improve interaction and cooperation; assess achievements, identify strengths, and address challenges in Phase I; draft a comprehensive work plan for Phase II where stakeholders are fully involved, resources realigned, and approaches for capacity building determined; lay out strategic seed road maps for Asia and Africa; and organize field trips for viewing of newly developed GSR materials.

Zhikang Li, director of the GSR Project, gave the overall report on Phase I.

Phase I reports on Asia and Africa were given by Jauhar Ali, senior IRRI plant breeder, and Baboucarr Manneh, senior scientist at AfricaRice, respectively. Dr. Ali announced the release of the first GSR variety (weed-tolerant rice 1 in Vietnam) and the second GSR hybrid (BSHS GSR6) in Indonesia.

The meeting was held in Sanya, Hainan Province, on 12-14 March 2013.

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