First high oleic groundnut cultivars commercialized in India
There is a demand for high-oleic groundnut varieties particularly by the food processing industry for its enhanced shelf-life benefits and by consumers for health benefits. To contribute to the CGIAR sub-IDO “Increased availability of diverse nutrient-rich foods”, a collaborative genetics and variety development work was undertaken by ICRISAT, ICAR-Directorate of Groundnut Research, Junagadh Agricultural University in Gujarat, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in Coimbatore, Acharya N G Ranga Agricultural University in Tripathi under the funding support of the CRP-Grain Legumes, and CRP-Grain Legumes and Dryland Cereals, Department of Agriculture, Co-operation and Farmers Welfare (DoAC&FW) of Govt. of India; OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID); Mars Inc. to develop new and improved groundnut varieties compliant to the All India Co-ordinated Research Project on Groundnut (AICRP-G) formulated guidelines for testing and release of high oleic groundnut varieties in India which set fatty acid profile of 80+2% oleic acid content to be referred as high-oleic groundnut.
In line with this research priority, the variety development efforts which started in 2011 was able to release two high oleic cultivars, Girnar 4 (ICGV 15083) and Grinar 5 (ICGV 15090) in India in 2019, after only eight years of time as compared to the normal breeding duration of 12-15 years; thanks to the innovative processes in groundnut breeding and testing pipeline employed which included early generation testing using SNP markers and NIRS and rapid generation advancement using greenhouses. These innovative approaches to variety development which shorten the breeding period have also been taken up by partner NARS. Data from national testing under AICRP-G, Girnar 4 and Girnar 5 recorded 41-57% and 37- 52% higher pod yield, respectively over the national checks, TG-37A and GPBD-4.