First ever high-yielding chickpea variety developed using marker-assisted backcrossing (MABC) released in Ethiopia

Ethiopia has become the first country in the world to release such a chickpea variety

In a first, the National Variety Release Committee (NVRC) of Ethiopia, announced the release of a high-yielding chickpea variety developed in collaboration with ICRISAT using marker assisted backcrossing (MABC).

The variety, ‘Geletu’, was named after the eminent pulses scientist Dr Geletu Bejiga from the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR). The variety was officially released for commercial production and recommended for wider adoption in the dry semi-arid tropics to moist agro-ecological zones. The variety delivered the highest grain yield of 3822 kg/ha at Arsi Robe, Ethiopia, which translates into an yield advantage of 15% over the check variety ‘Teketay’ and 78% more than the local check. Geletu with medium seed size and 100-seed weight ranging over 28.0 – 39.9 grams has compound leaves. Under Ethiopian conditions, the variety exhibited resistance to fusarium wilt and root rot with a rating of 3 and 2 respectively on a 1-9 scale (Where 1= free from disease, 9= killed by the disease).