Monday, January 5, 2015

India: CSISA finalizes new rice breeding strategies for 2015

By Dr. Arvind Kumar, Dr. M.S. Ramesha, Ms Shaivya Singh & Mr. Rohit Katara

The Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia (CSISA-II) project held a Review and Planning Workshop to evaluate the program’s progress, and plan and finalize new breeding strategies for 2015. The workshop was held at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) South Asia Hub, the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid-Tropics campus in Patancheru, India on 16–17 December 2014.

The event was attended by 25 participants from NAREs partners from India, Bangladesh, Nepal and IRRI. Dr. K. K. Jena, Dr. Michael Thomson, Dr. Guoyou Ye and Dr. Rebecca Laza from IRRI Headquarters participated in the deliberations.

CSISA-II, which entered its third year in September 2012, is building more strategic approaches with its network of partners in India, Bangladesh and Nepal to focus on the eastern and central Indo-Gangetic Plains dominated by small farms, low incomes, and low levels of agricultural mechanization, irrigation, and productivity.

Rice breeding activity under CSISA’s Objective 3 continues to be the program for IRRI. Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and U.S. Agency for International Development, the activity promotes labor- and water-saving rice technologies in rice-based cropping systems in South Asian countries. The rice breeding activity targets traits such as higher yield,  variety development, adaptation to direct-seeded rice under water-saving crop establishment methods, heat tolerance, grain quality and straw fodder value.

Dr. Arvind Kumar, Senior Scientist, plant breeder at IRRI South Asia Hub, Hyderabad, and Dr. M. S. Ramesha, leader of Objective 3, facilitated the proceedings of the workshop.

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