Lucknow, 13th August, 2012
Research and development in sugarcane must address the issues of sugarcane, sugar and energy sector of the country in holistic manner, said Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE & Director General, ICAR while addressing the scientists of Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research, Lucknow. Dr. Ayyappan emphasized to break the stagnant cane yield of about 68 t/ha in the country, and urged sugarcane scientists to evolve mechanism for seed cane production and distribution chain for quick replacement of very old varieties with new promising cane varieties.
Dr. Ayyappan commended the efforts of scientists in evolving cutting edge sugarcane technologies such as improved cane variety CoLk 94184 (early maturing high sugar variety), cane node technology (new technique to reduce cane seed quantity and higher plant population), organic ratoon cultivation for sustaining yield and soil health, water saving sugarcane technologies, sugarbeet cultivation in sub tropics, sugarcane machines (planter, RMD & harvester), diagnostic kits for red rot and smut diseases, bio-intensive insect-pests and diseases management. Most emergent challenge is to convert sugar mill into sugarcane processing complex to produce sugar, ethanol, electricity, pulp, animal feed, fertilizer etc. to meet ever increasing demand for sweetener and energy, he added. Farmers’ First must be focus of research and technology development programme. Water saving technologies like Skip furrow method of irrigation, drip irrigation, trash mulching etc. must be popularized over larger areas by implementing modern Extension tools like ICT, Expert system, model farm approach to extend benefit to more and more number of farmers, Dr. Ayyappan emphasized.
Dr. S. Solomon, Director, IISR, Lucknow presented a brief account of Institute’s achievements in developing many remunerative sugarcane technologies.
(Source: IISR, Lucknow)