2nd Rice Germplasm Field Day organized on 11th November, 2019
The ICAR-National Rice Research Institute (NRRI), Cuttack organized 2nd Rice Germplasm Field Day on 11th November, 2019 under the auspices of Consortium Research Project on Agro-biodiversity jointly with ICAR-NBPGR for the benefit of rice research workers working in ICAR Institutes, SAUs and Private Seed Companies. More than 75 participants, including scientists from ICAR Institutes, State Agricultural Universities, Pvt. Seed Companies and State Govt. officials from various parts of the country attended the programme. There are about 109,000 accessions of rice germplasm conserved in National Gene Bank which are being systematically characterised for agro-morphological traits at NRRI farm which is recognised as one of the National Active Germplasm Sites. During the current kharif season, about 4000 diverse accessions of rice are grown in the field for characterization and preliminary evaluation. In addition, 1000 accessions are also grown for detailed evaluation against biotic (Blast, Bacterial blight and BPH) and abiotic (Submergence and Salinity) stresses. This programme provided unique opportunity to the researchers across the country to have a glance of variability in rice germplasm accessions grown in the field and select desirable accessions for utilization in their respective breeding programmes. This /for instance, will enhance the utilization of rice germplasm conserved in the NRRI gene bank which were hitherto not accessible to breeders.
While inaugurating the programme, Dr. H. Pathak, Director of ICAR-NRRI, gave an inspiring speech and emphasized on the importance of the gift of Nature in form of genetic resources of different crops to mitigate and sustain any type of climate aberrations. He congratulated both the Institutes for organizing Germplasm Field Day in succession and insisted that such programmes should be organized every year at appropriate time for the interest of rice breeders and benefit of farmers.
Earlier, Dr. B.C. Patra, Principal Scientist and I/c Head, Crop Improvement Division welcomed all the scientists, delegates from different parts of the country, research scholars and other participants, and stated that the ‘Rice Germplasm Field Day’ has been organised at NRRI regularly in collaboration with NBPGR. Also gave a brief introductory presentation highlighting the activities and achievements of CRP on Agro-biodiversity Project. The rice genetic resources are now being characterized and screened against major pests, diseases and abiotic stresses like submergence, drought, high and low temperature stress at multi locations of the country. Dr. Ashok Kumar, Head, Division of Germplasm Evaluation, NBPGR gave a stimulating speech on the collaborative approach to achieve the goal of sustainable agriculture by utilising the wealth of rice germplasm conserved in gene banks.
All the participants visited the experimental fields to observe and note the variability, their morphological characteristics and other trait specific evaluation nurseries. Some of the participants suggested that pre-breeding materials may be developed by the National Institutes to cater the need of the rice research stations for development of region specific varieties suitable to different ecologies. It was advised to the delegates to give the indent of their germplasm requirement with proper Accession number, which will be supplied to them after signing Material Transfer Agreement (MTA). The delegates also visited other experimental fields and the Oryza Museum of the Institute. The meeting ended with Vote of thanks by Dr. B.C. Patra, Organising Secretary of the Rice Germplasm Field Day Celebration.