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PIA Press Release
2010/03/16

PhilRice to farmers: Shift to drought resistance rice variety

Negros Occ. (16 March) -- The Philippine Rice Research Institute, PRRI, is calling on farmers to shift to drought resistant rice seed varieties that can withstand long hot weather and yield better harvest compared to the ordinary variety.

Phil Rice OIC Leo Javier during a meeting with local agriculturists here said the National Seed Industry Council, NSIC RC 192 and the Philippine Seed Board, PSB RC 68 are both approved by seed certifying entities and are drought resistant.

The two varieties can help farmers have better harvest despite the onslaught of El Niņo Phenomenon.

PSB RC 68 can be harvested after 115 days while NSIC RC 192 in 110 days. "Most of our drought resistant varieties can be harvested between 108 to 117 days," he told PIA.

He said an ordinary variety requires about 5,000 liters of water per hectare before it matures and is ready for harvest while the drought resistant ones need only half of that or 2,500 liters per hectare, hence, better yield for farmers despite the absence of much water.

The seed has the capacity to produce four to five tons per hectare or about 100 bags per hectare, he added.

He explained, though, that any rice variety can tolerate drought but during its reproductive stage, approximately two weeks after the follicle has emerged, a good amount of water is needed for its normal growth.

"With drought resistant seeds, less water is needed." (PIA-LOL) [top]

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