For a number of years, rice cultivation in the haor areas, which account for one-fifth of the total rice production in Bangladesh, has been bearing the brunt of climate change
A five-year research project has been launched to develop new rice varieties for the haor areas in Bangladesh.
The project, titled "Development of Short-duration Cold-tolerant Rice Varieties for Haor Areas of Bangladesh" was launched at a workshop organized by International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) on Monday.
The project will be funded by Krishi Gobeshona Foundation (KGF). Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI) is a partner of the project.
For a number of years, rice cultivation in the haor areas, which account for one-fifth of the total rice production in Bangladesh, has been bearing the brunt of climate change. To tackle the problem, rice growers in the haor regions need short-duration, cold-tolerant and high yielding varieties of rice. The purpose of this project is to develop such varieties of rice.
Regarding the project, Additional Agriculture Secretary Kamalaranjan Das said: “IRRI-Bangladesh ties go a long way back. IRRI has played a crucial role in ensuring food security in the country. We hope that this new project will help bring a positive change in the lives of the haor people and also contribute towards food and nutrition security across the country.”
KGF Executive Director Dr Jiban Krishna Biswas said: “Boro rice is sandwiched by two adverse conditions in the haor areas. Any deviation from these conditions damages the crop. So, this project is expected to develop varieties of rice that could stand up to these adverse conditions - low temperature and flash flood - and also give high yield.”
IRRI Director General Dr Mathew Morrell said: “The critical climatic challenges that the haor areas in Bangladesh face are going to intensify in the future due to global climate change. So, developing cold tolerant, short duration and high yielding rice varieties is imperative for building resilience.”