IAR Releases Eight Improved Varieties For Commercial Cultivation

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Maize

By; SANI ALIYU, Zaria
The Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), Ahmadu Bello University (ABU),

Zaria has released eight improved varieties for commercial cultivation in Nigeria and beyond.  Professor Muhammad Faguji Ishiyaku, Director of the Institute who disclosed this in an interview in his office said, the release follows the approval given by the National Committee on Naming, Registration and Release of Crop Varieties, Livestock Breeds and Fisheries during its 34th meeting held at National Centre for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology (NAGRAB) Ibadan. 
Faguji Ishiyaku said, the varieties approved for the registration and commercial are Oats SAMOAT – 1 and 2 which has a unique attribute of high protein, and was developed in collaborations with solutions LLC, United States, Context Global Development, United States. 
For the Maize Hybrids, the Director said, IAR released SAMMAZ 64 (White Hybrid) SMMAZ 65 (Yellow Hybrids), SAMMAZ 66 (Intermediate Maturing) SAMMAZ 67 and 68  (Drought Tego) in collaboration with African Agricultural Technology Transformation Foundation (AATF) and International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) Ibadan. 
While the Cowpea SAMPEA 21 has a unique attributes of early maturing and it will also assist farmer to have full benefit and gains after harvesting. 
The Director explain further that, SAMMAZ 64 has potential yield of 8.2 tonnes per hectare and it tolerant to drought and striga hermonthics with 110-120 days maturity, SAMMAZ 65 potential yields is 8.7 tonnes per hectare, SAMMAZ 66 has potential yields of 8.4 tones per hectare. 
Also, SAMMAZ 67 has potential yield of 9.7 tones per hectare, with high gain yield and immediate provitamin A content, and SAMMAZ 68 has potential yield of 8.7 tones per hectare with high yield as good standability.   
According to Professor Muhammad Faguji Ishiyaku, the approval process is a routine for the National Committee to look at the memontical data and performance of varieties developed by the breeders in different Institutions in the country. 
He said, the weight of the data will enable the committee to decide to approve or disapprove for commercial cultivation. 
Prof. Faguji Ishiyaku said IAR has fielded its varieties which they feel will help Nigerian farmers to produce sufficient food for the country and beyond with high profits. 
The director advised government to engage and encourage youth to join farming activities for the country to benefit and to reduce the increase of insecurity that is going on among those who are sitting idle in the society. 

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