New highly productive sorghum varieties released
Photo: Farmers like Elinati Mbewe from Dedza will see their sorghum productivity increase, as a result of the new varieties. Photo, ICRISAT
Three improved sorghum varieties with a yield potential of approximately 4 tons per hectare and tolerant to grey leaf spot, rust and other common diseases were released in Malawi early this year. These new varieties replace two varieties released in 1993, and have since been the only improved sorghum varieties available in Malawi.
ICRISAT Country Representative for Malawi, Dr Patrick Okori, said ICRISAT and government are keen to replace the old varieties because they no longer meet today’s production needs, leading to a significant decline in yield from three tons per hectare, at the time of release to an average of two tons per hectare, today.”
“As farmers diversify their production systems to meet their livelihood needs, including food and household income, agricultural research remains pivotal for development of technologies that secure productivity,” Okori said.
ICRISAT and the Department of Agricultural Research Services developed the new sorghum varieties (Pilira 3, 4 and 5) to replace the old varieties (Pilira 1 and 2). The Agricultural Technology Clearing Committee of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Malawi, officiated the release.
Discover more about Malawi Seed Industry Development Project (MSIDP): http://gldc.cgiar.org/new-highly-productive-sorghum-varieties-released/