Agri Business

Icrisat develops high yield pigeonpea hybrid

PTI New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018


Agri-research body Icrisat has developed hybrid variety of pigeonpea, popularly known as red gram pulse, which claims 30 per cent more yield potential than other breeds.

Madhya Pradesh notified the hybrid as ‘RV ICPH 2671’ in December last year for commercial cultivation in the State.

Pigeonpea also popularly known as red gram, tuar or arhar is a primary source of protein for millions in India.

For over five decades the productivity of pigeonpea has remained low (600-700 kg per hectare) and to meet the annual domestic needs of 3.5 million tonnes, India imports about 5 lakh tonnes of red gram from Myanmar and Africa every year.

After sustained efforts in collaboration with ICAR starting from 1974, the Hyderabad-based Icrisat developed commercial hybrids in pigeonpea after over hundreds of on-farm trials, Mr K.B. Saxena, Principal Scientist, Icrisat, said.

The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid-Tropics (ICRISAT) was founded in 1972.

So far, two hybrids of pigeonpea — ICPH 2671 and ICPH 2740 — have been found to be the most promising and these were selected for large-scale seed production, on-farm testing and test marketing.

Hybrid ‘ICPH 2671’ was evaluated in 35 multi-location trials for four years in Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu and recorded 42 per cent superiority over popular variety ‘Maruti’, Mr Saxena said.

Similarly, another hybrid ‘ICPH 2740’ was evaluated in 33 multi-location trials for four years in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra and the hybrid recorded 38 per cent superiority over the best variety ‘Asha’, he added.

On the cost of hybrid seed, he said, at Icrisat, the researchers harvested hybrid seed yields of 1,500-1,600 kg/hectare. A seed company on an average harvested 1,350 kg/ hectare hybrid yield during the last four years.

Cost of hybrid seed production were worked out at different locations and excluding land cost it was found to be about Rs 15-25 a kg, Mr Saxena said.

It has a crop maturity duration of 180 days.

Profitability of a hybrid exceeds that from other types.

An on-farm trial conducted in Amravati and Yavatmal districts of Maharashtra revealed that three farmers harvested a record yield of over 4,000 kg/hectare of pigeonpea.

One of the farmers in Medak district of Andhra Pradesh harvested 3,300 kg/hectare of grains that fetched a profit of over Rs 83,000/hectare compared with Rs 24,000 from local variety, Mr Saxena added.

Trials have revealed that there was no difference in taste in hybrids vis-a-vis other breeds of red gram.

Published on July 21, 2011

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