LOS BAÑOS, Laguna, Philippines—Taiwan’s agency for cooperative development projects and the world’s leading rice research center have launched the first in a series of workshops for improving rice productivity in developing countries.
The effort is part of an agreement between the International Cooperation and Development Fund (TaiwanICDF) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) to implement training courses in managing soil, water, and nutrients.
The initial two-week workshop is on Rice postproduction and marketing, which opened on 16 May.Seventeen participants are from Taiwan's partner countries including Brunei Darussalam, Haiti, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Solomon Islands, South Korea, and Taiwan are attending the course at the IRRI Training Center
The participants--representing research, extension, and nongovernment agencies and the private sector--are being introduced to the many challenges affecting rice postproduction. These include identifying and measuring production and postharvest losses; evaluating technologies for harvesting, threshing, drying, storage, and milling; and learning how to use methodologies and tools to assess local postharvest chains and map actors and set up business plans to introduce or disseminate suitable technologies.
The course is being coordinated by Martin Gummert, head of IRRI's Postharvest Development Unit; Eugenio Castro, Jr., senior manager at the Training Center; and Christopher Cabardo, IRRI associate scientist.
In August, IRRI will be implementing at its headquarters a 3-week TaiwanICDF training course on seed capacity and extension. It will focus on building knowledge and skills for the development of seed systems. It will provide an overview of IRRI’s work in the seed sector including germplasm maintenance and utilization of diverse genetic resources; the International Network for Genetic Evaluation of Rice (INGER) and the processes of germplasm exchange; and IRRI’s experiences in the development of seed systems and the introduction of new varieties into countries through projects like the Stress-Tolerant Rice for Africa and South Asia (STRASA) and the Consortium for Unfavorable Rice Environments (CURE).
The course will be offered to representatives of TaiwanICDF’s partner countries: Haiti, Nicaragua, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea.
To achieve agricultural development, Myanmar's Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, with technical assistance provided by IRRI, has developed the Myanmar Rice Sector Development Strategy that seeks to boost rice production, ensure food self-sufficiency, and gain a larger share in the international rice trade for the country.
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