ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Pakistan has a great potential to earn billions of dollars by developing its agricultural sector through using hybrid seeds and modern machinery/technology aimed at increasing per acre yield.
Mission Director United States Agency for International Development (USAID) John Groarke said this on Wednesday while handing over new varieties of maize seeds to Pakistani research organizations and private-sector seed companies.
The ceremony was held at National Agricultural Research Center (NARC) Islamabad.
The new varieties of maize were identified and provided by USAID’s Agriculture Innovation Program, in coordination with the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, in an effort to jump start the production of quality hybrid maize seed in Pakistan.
America and Pakistan share the goals of improving the livelihoods of farmers across Pakistan and increasing access to nutritious food for millions of Pakistanis”, Groarke said.
When America and Pakistan would work together, we achieve growth and prosperity, in Pakistan’s agricultural sector and beyond”, Muhammad Sadiq Tahir, a farmer from Rawalakot, Azad Kashmir commented,
These seeds will improve the quality of my harvest for years to come. I am grateful to the American people for their support to Pakistan’s agricultural development”, he said.
USAID’s Agricultural Innovation Programme is a four-year, $30 million initiative designed to increase productivity and incomes in the agricultural sector through the promotion and dissemination of modern production practices for major crops including wheat, maize, rice, livestock, fruits and vegetables.
It may be mentioned here that the varieties of maize which were handed over are bred to resist drought and heat stresses and have enhanced nutritional quality.
They also have increased tolerance to insect attacks and low soil nitrogen, according to report about the new varieties of maize seeds.