Scientists at a workshop yesterday said more fast-growing varieties of crops need to be developed to meet the rising food demand in the country.
The workshop titled “Introduction to crop varieties developed by BINA and its technologies” was organised for journalists by Bangladesh Institute of Nuclear Agriculture (BINA) at its auditorium in Mymensingh city.
Around 40 journalists participated at the programme.
BINA scientists said while farming land is shrinking as opposed to a growing population, research is on to develop more crops with short-duration and nutritional varieties.
Since 1978, BINA has developed a total of 103 varieties of 17 crops, they said, adding that the 16 paddy varieties they developed so far have revolutionised the country's agriculture sector over the past four decades.
The paddy varieties include zinc-enriched and aromatic rice as well as varieties that are tolerant to drought, salinity and submersion.
Now paddy is grown round the year not only in drought-prone areas, but also in flood and salinity-prone areas in the coastal belt, contributing to a stronger growth in local and national economy, the BINA scientists said.
Among others, Dr Asgar Ali Sarker, director (administration) of BINA, and Jahangir Alam, director (training) of BINA, spoke at the programme where BINA Director General Dr Biresh Kumar Goswami was the chief guest. The workshop was conducted by BINA Chief Scientific Officer Dr MA Malek and its Principal Scientific Officer Dr Shamsunnahar Begum.