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‘Develop drought-resistant sugarcane varieties’

IND‘Develop drought-resistant sugarcane varieties’


T.R. Sharma (third left), Deputy Director General (Crop Science) of Indian Council of Agricultural Research, releasing a book on the proceedings of a ‘Germplasm and Breeding and Molecular Biology Workshop’ organised in Coimbatore city on July 8, 2024 by the International Society of Sugar Cane Technologies and Sugarcane Breeding Institute.
| Photo Credit: Siva SaravananS

There is a need to develop drought-resistant varieties of sugarcane suitable for Indian conditions, said T.R. Sharma, Deputy Director General (Crop Science) of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, in Coimbatore on Monday.

Inaugurating a ‘Germplasm and Breeding and Molecular Biology Workshop’ organised here by the International Society of Sugar Cane Technologies (ISSCT) and the ICAR – Sugarcane Breeding Institute, he said sugarcane was cultivated in over 100 countries on 26 million hectares, including five million hectare in India.

About 1.9 billion tonnes of sugarcane is produced annually world over. Sugarcane contributes to 80 % of sugar and 40 % bio ethanol of the globe with the total output value of over $ 80 billion. India is one of the major producer of sugar and sugar products. Sugarcane has a complex genome and is a very complex crop. The sugarcane genome was out in March. It is necessary for researchers to identify the individual genes and know their functions, he said.

Prasanta Dash, Assistant Director General, ICAR, said it was important to use sugarcane’s genome sequence so that socio-economic and livelihood of farmers were accomplished.

G. Hemaprabha, Director of the Sugarcane Breeding Institute, Coimbatore, elaborated on how sugarcane was an important crop.

Angelique Dhont, Michael Keith Butterfield, and George Piperidis of the International Society of Sugar Cane Technologies, also spoke.



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