Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI) has developed two new high yielding rice varieties having higher yield potentials over the two most popular existing rice varieties in the country.
The two new varieties suitable for cultivation during Boro season – BRRI dhan88 and BRRI dhan89 – released at a time when two of the country’s most productive rice varieties – BRRI dhan28 and BRRI dhan29 – are fast losing potential due to ageing.
National Seed Board (NSB) in its meeting on Tuesday gave approval for the cultivation of the two new varieties having up to one tons (per hectare) of yield advantage over the BRRI dhan28 and BRRI dhan29 when the latter two are degenerating and suffering from increased pest infestation.
BRRI scientists told UNB on Wednesday that the newly released BRRI dhan88 has a yield potential of 7 tons per hectare comparing to BRRI dhan28’s 6 ton. Its life cycle is similar to BRRI dhan 28 but pest and disease infestation in BRRI dhan88 is comparatively lesser.
The average yield of the BRRI dhan89 is within eight ton per hectare, half ton to one ton more than BRRI dhan29’s average yield. It matures nearly a week earlier that the BRRI dhan29. The cooked rice out of this variety is non-sticky and delicious. BRRI expects this variety to become popular among the farmers.
Over the years BRRI developed as many as 92 rice varieties. And all of those have diverse features and respective advantage points like some are good for one season over the others while some are submergence tolerant, some are salt-tolerant while some are good for having finer and scented grain quality etc.
However, since their release in 1994, two BRRI varieties won farmers heart all over Bangladesh – these are BRRI dhan28 and BRRI dhan29 for their high yield potentials during Boro season. Now the new two varieties – BRRI dhan88 and BRRI dhan89 – are expected to replace the two most popular Boro rice varieties in Bangladesh.
Of the three rice seasons – Aus, Aman and Boro – the last one being the irrigated dry season rice gives the country more than half of the yearly rice output (19 million MT out of 35 million MT). And BRRI dhan 28 and 29 are grown in over 60 percent of rice lands during the Boro season.
But after over two decades of high performance, these varieties are now getting vulnerable to degeneration and pest infestation. That’s why BRRI scientists developed the two new varieties, BRRI plant breeder and Director (Research) Dr Tamal Lata Aditya told UNB.