Friday, 23 January 2015

Fodder seed industry in Pakistan:

Pakistan is an agricultural county and its economy is based on agriculture sector including livestock. Livestock contributes 49.7% share to agriculture GDP of Pakistan. Sources of feed to animals are cultivated lands, feed from uncultivated lands, crop residues and concentrations. In Pakistan major fodder crops during winter are berseem, alfalfa, oat, barley and mustard and summer fodder crops are maize, sorghum and millets. These crops use 16-17% of area of the country. The area is decreased day by day but production yield is increases due to R&D efforts by the National Research System (NRS).
The area under fodder crop is increased wither low fluctuations from 2603 thousand hectares in 1976-77 to 2644 thousand hectares in 1993-1994. Punjab province uses an area of 2150.6 thousand ha with production of 44626.5 thousand tons. Sindh province uses an area of 323.8 thousand ha with production of 8317.3 thousand tons. Many research institutes are working on fodder crops in Pakistan. Ayub Agriculture Research Institute (AARI) and National Agriculture Research Center (NARC) are main research station of fodder seeds production. Fodder research institute Sargodha is also a well-established setup for hybrid seed production of sorghum, berseem and millets.
Before partition of Indo-Pak a single research station on fodder crops was present in Sirsa, India. When Pakistan came into being, a research station was initiated at the former Punjab Agriculture College and Research institute (PACRI) Lyallpur (Faisalabad), where a fodder research institute was established under botany department. This unit worked a lot and then it was progressed when PACRI was raised on the status of University of Agriculture Faisalabad. The fodder research station was shifted to AARI. AARI has sub-station in Sargodha where work is done on hybrid seed production. In 1981, Sargodha research institute on fodder crops was raised a full-fledged research institute by Director General of AARI.
In Pakistan main fodder crops are clovers, sorghum, millet, shaftal, maize, guara, peas and oats. The forage yield of these crops is low due to no availability of good quality seed. Hybrid seeds are not available in Pakistan at a large scale. This low yield can be increased by using good quality seeds and hybrids in sorghum and corn maize.National growth is based on food availability and poverty alleviation which are condemned from livestock promotion. Livestock sector is promoted by fodder and green forage.
On fodder improvement no work is done exceptPunjab where there is needed to strengthened to this department.There is continuous sifting of staff from fodder to other disciplines. There is lack of trained research staff within country and abroad. There is lack of pest control programme in fodder e.g control of Egyptian weevil and army worm complexes in alfalfa and Berseem.In Baluchistan, NWFP, cholistan there is need to accelerate and renovation of rangeland. Some rangeland is overgrazed to extent that even hundred acres can hardly sustain a sheep.
Complete description about introduction, evaluation and documentation of fodder germplasm for rain-fed and irrigated areas.Breeding is done for dual purpose of grains and green forage yielding varieties, high protein quality contents, drought and salt tolerance, lodging resistance and high yield production. Work on the production of synthetic cultivars in lucerne and berseem for high vegetative growth is done. Government should promote breeding in fodder crops on international level by making linkage with international companies related with fodder crops seed production. Government should give alliance to labs, research stations for better development of good quality seeds of fodder crops.
In Pakistan there is no proper system for distribution of seed. No quarantine laws are followed by agencies. Pakistan is a developing country, so there is no proper system for seed multiplication. Hybrid seeds of fodder crops are imported from India, China and USA. Pakistani seed companies produced low quality seed. Fodder research institute Sargodha and ARRI are two main research stations for fodder seed development. NARC is doing best for fodder seed production. There is need to produced seeds of sorghum, berseem, millet, and sudangrass in Pakistan. Government should provide maximum facilities to research stations for the production of fodder seeds in Pakistan.

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