Modern tech urged for seed development

STAFF REPORT ISB: To strengthen national food security, Pakistan will have to adopt modern agricultural technologies, especially in terms of seed development and farming, said agriculture experts while addressing a seminar on ‘Developing Seed in Pakistan: Challenges and Opportunities’ at PARC.

Experts stressed upon enhancing knowledge sharing initiatives to improve strategies and future opportunities for seed development in general and the potato crop in particular.

The National Agriculture Research Council (NARC) organised the seminar in collaboration with the Embassy of the Netherlands.

Renowned agriculture expert Romke Wustman was the keynote speaker at the seminar.

He discussed seed concepts, viability, multiplication, certification and storage and shared some vital information with the audience in this regard.

Narrating the success story of agriculture in Netherlands, Romke said, “We have over 400 varieties of potato seed registered and we produce one million tons of seed potatoes of which 70 percent are exported to over 80 countries. Pakistan has been growing Dutch varieties for fifty or sixty years now.”

Earlier, NARC Director General Muhammad Azeem Khan said that potato is an increasingly important crop and any support and expertise on the seed is valuable for us.

Khalid Qureshi, senior director at the Department of Horticulture Research, also addressed the gathering and said that potato has been becoming increasingly important for consumers and farmers – but disease, quality and price of seed and technical, managerial and economical problems persist.

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