Seven Varieties in Eight Years
The Rice Research Institute of Iran (RRII) released and introduced seven varieties in eight years to farmers for enhancing the quantity and quality of produced rice in country scale, Dr. Hossieni, the director-general of RRII.
According to the news website of the ministry of Agricultural Jahad and from Dr. Hossieni, the director-general of RRII, The rice Research Institute of Iran (RRII) released and introduced more than 55 rice varieties for the rice agricultural sector since 1993 that increased the average rice grain yield of Iranian rice farmers from 1.5 tonnes per hectare in 1945 to 4.8 tonnes per hectare in 2020.
She said the RRII in its rice breeding program to produce and introduce new rice varieties focuses on three rice main categories: high cooking quality, high yield potential, drought tolerance.
Despite low grain yield (less than 5 tons ha-1), sensitivity, the Iranian local rice varieties with wide premium grain and cooking quality, less water requirement, high cooking quality, aroma and taste, marketability, and consumer preferences have the most priorities for cultivation in the 80% of the paddy fields of the northern region and other rice-growing provinces of Iran.
She stated that the newly released varieties have higher cooking quality, aroma, and eating taste characters close to local varieties. Also, these varieties compare to local varieties are tolerant to pests, disease, and lodging.
Dr. Hossieni also pointed out that these improved and higher cooking quality rice with an average grain yield of 5 to 6 tons per hectare compared to common local rice varieties are be able to increase the farmer income by more than 20%. The most important and acceptable by farmers between the newly improved rice varieties are Guilneh, Anam, and Guilar.
She also added that the high yield potential rice varieties have an average grain yield of more than 7 tonnes per hectare, acceptable cooking quality, early mature and tolerance to lodging compare to local varieties. Tisa, rash, and Tolu are classified into these categories.
Dr. Hossieni also pointed out that Kian, the drought-tolerant rice variety is a short duration variety (averagely, 105-110 days), with an average yield of 5.5 to 6 tons per hectare, semi-dwarf (20 cm shorter than local rice varieties), and has the same cooking and eating grain quality compared to common local rice varieties.
She also said that one of the pioneer government programs for rice food sufficiency programs was the on-farm control of rice nutritional requirements on the pilot farms across the northern rice-growing area of the country. The academic members of the soil and water department of the rice research institute of Iran were the backbone of this program through pre-season soil sampling and analyzing macro and micronutrient recommendations and on-farm collaboration with selected farmers. The most important objective of this program is to fulfill of grain yield cap of paddy fields.