RICE BREEDING INNOVATIONS
The Rice Breeding Innovations (RBI) platform of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), in collaboration with national agricultural research and extension systems (NARES) partners, develops and deploys innovative breeding strategies, tools, and technologies to sustainably enhance the genetic potential of rice for higher yield and its ability to tolerate pest and diseases infestations, soil and environmental stresses due to drought, salinity, and sodicity, and lower temperatures while improving its grain and nutritional qualities resulting to delivery of improved varieties and products to farmers, consumers, and other end-users in a fast and effective manner.
RBI has been actively engaged in the modernization of IRRI's breeding programs to meet the needs of farmers and consumers. To that end, it has been engaged in the development of market segments and product concepts, development of relative maturity system, product management, development of multilocation testing networks in collaboration with NARES partners. It utilizes a unified breeding strategy, dubbed as 'OneRice,' for standardization, utilizing genomic selections and predictions, and reducing breeding cycle time through Rapid Generation Advancement. Underpinning these are pre-breeding activities such as deployment of major native genes into elite materials, disease resistance stewardship, making marker-assisted selection (MAS) more reliable, digitization of data through proprietary databases, and intellectual property records.
The RBI Program Management ensures communications, delivery of project outcomes, and fulfillment of reporting requirements. The Platform conducts all its activities in compliance with IRRI’s policies and procedures to ensure minimal environmental footprint. The Rice Breeding Risk management team works with staff and liaises with the IRRI risk management team to ensure a safe working environment and implementation of safety compliance and mitigation strategies. All seeds are transferred nationally and internationally through “safe seed transfer” processes and procedures by testing them rigorously at the Seed Health Unit based at IRRI prior to subjecting them for inspections and certification for phytosanitary and quarantine requirements. All seeds are only sent through FAO-developed Standard Material Transfer Agreement and IRRI’s Material Transfer Agreements to comply with CGIAR Intellectual Property policies and procedures.
IRRI Announcement: Rice Breeding Innovations Platform Organizational Changes
“Father of Hybrid Rice” Yuan Longping’s Legacy: An agricultural innovation that helps feed the world
2020 marked a challenging year for everyone. At IRRI, research slowed but did not stop, and various initiatives and innovations progressed during the 12 months to respond to the challenges posed amid and after the pandemic.