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NBPGR RS, Thrissur organised a programme on “Promoting On-Farm Conservation: NBPGR’s Initiatives” in the farm premises of the station on 2nd April 2024 to felicitate the custodian farmers involved in on-farm conservation. Dr TR Sharma, DDG (Crop Science), ICAR was the chief guest of this programme while Dr DK Yadava, ADG (Seed) was the guest of honour. Dr Madhu Subramanian, Director of Research, KAU, Dr GP Singh, Director, NBPGR and Dr PK Singh, Head, Division of Plant Exploration and Germplasm Collection, NBPGR graced the occasion. Twenty custodian farmers of the station had participated in the event, including seven Plant Genome Savior awardees. DDG appreciated the level of awareness of the farmer conservators of the Kerala state which was reflected by the highest number of Plant Genome Savior awardees and the need for systematic documentation of custodian farmers’, the crops and landraces maintained by them. ADG stressed about the importance of on-farm conservation in this climate change era and role of NBPGR in promoting on-farm conservation. Director appreciated on the station’s collaboration with KAU, state department of agriculture and farmers in implementing various on-farm conservation in the region.

Dr Madhu Subramanian spoke about the strong link between KAU and NBPGR and also the sustained commitment of farmers in conservation activities. Dr PK Singh explained about on-farm conservation activities undertaken by NBPGR and the importance of linking this activity with market. Dr K Pradheep, Principal Scientist and Officer in charge of the station briefed about the station’s efforts in promoting on-farm conservation. The farmer conservators shared their experiences and Ms. Mini, Asst. Director of Agriculture, Irinjalakuda narrated on farm conservation efforts in brinjal. The display of unique landraces of tubers, spices and fruits by the custodian farmers were well received by the dignitaries. Earlier the dignitaries visited the exhibits displayed by the station, the field gene bank, and other facilities, and reviewed the station’s research activities including wide hybridization programme. Dr Sushil Pandey, Principal Scientist, NBPGR and Dr K Gopala eddy, Scientist, SBI, Coimbatore were also participated in the programme.

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