ISLAMABAD - The Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) has retrieved the coordination system for research and development among the public research institutes at federal and provincial levels, private sector, academia and NGO’s for high crop production for the betterment of farmers and rural community. PARC committed to coordinate with all stakeholders in research particularly in crop sector.

PARC, as per its mandate, will extend all possible coordination to National Agricultural Research System (NARS) for the improvement of oilseed crops in the country through germplasm acquisition and distribution, holding of planning meetings, travelling seminars and capacity building of the NARS partners.  This was stated by Dr. Muhammad Munir Goraya, Member (Plant Sciences Division) Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) while presiding over a meeting of “Oilseed Crops Cooperative Units” at here PARC (HQs) Islamabad. Oilseed crops experts from various federal and provincial research organisations participated in the meeting and shared their knowledge and experience.

Dr Munir Goraya, Member (PSD) urged the scientists to have in depth discussion on the constraints and issues, highlighted by participants during meeting and devise national collaborative strategies to address them. 

Dr Muhammad Azeem Khan, Director General, National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) highlighted the issues of availability of certified seed of varieties / hybrids. He urged to have a coordinated efforts to enhance the supply of certified seed so that the country can progress to achieve the seed replacement rate as per that of advanced countries in this field. He also highlighted the mechanism of fast track seed production using the services, offered by PARC Agro-Tech Company (PATCO). This facility is available for the whole NARS.

On this occasion, Dr Muhammad Amjad, National Coordinator (Oilseed Crops) PARC has given a detailed presentation on overview of oilseed crops situation, production and research achievements under coordinating system. He said that worldwide oilseed crops are grown on 229.09 million ha with production 655 seed and 152 million tonne oil. The soybean and palm oil contribute major share which is about 30pc each.

Pakistan imports about 2.29 million tone vegetable oil of Rs. 225 billion whereas domestic production is 636 thousand tonnes from an area 0.645 m ha which only 3.3pc of cultivated area is.

The Oilseed Crop Experts said that National Agriculture Research System (NARS) has developed 67 varieties/hybrids of oilseed crops with very high yield potential of 4 tonne per ha whereas average yield is very low that is bellow one tone per ha. They said that local production can be increased by planting improved varieties/hybrids with new production technologies. It will save huge foreign exchange of the country.