The Federal Government has approved for registration and release, nine hybrid crops varieties developed by scientists for Nigerian farmers to boost agriculture and food security in the country.
Announcing the result of research by Nigerian crop scientists and breeders, chairman, National Varieties Release Committee (NVRC), Chief Awoyemi Oladosu, said 15 crops were initially submitted for registration.
Oladosu spoke in Ibadan at the 24th NVRC meeting held at the National Centre for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology (NACGRAB), a parastatal under Federal Ministry of Science and Technology which serves as the committee’s secretariat.
He listed the nine successful varieties as two hybrid white yam (UMUDr/020) and (UMUDr/021), two maize hybrids (SAMMAZ 49) and (SAMMAZ 51) as well as one maize variety (SAMMAZ 52).
Oladosu said others were two cowpea varieties (FUAMPEA 1 and FUAMPEA 2), one amaranthus or vegetable hybrid (NHAMAR 1) and one okra hybrid (NHOKRA 1).
He said the yam varieties were developed by National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike, and International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) Ibadan.
The chairman said the maize varieties were developed by Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), Zaria and IITA while the cowpeas were from Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, IAR, and IITA.
He said the two vegetable varieties, amaranthus and okra were from National Horticultural Research Institute, Ibadan.
At the occasion, Dr Sunday Aladele, Registrar, NACGRAB, thanked the Minister of Science and Technology for facilitating the funding of the meeting.
Aladele also thanked the West Africa Agricultural Programme for the financial support received so far.
He announced that 166 crop varieties from Nigeria had been entered into ECOWAS catalogue, including 59 maize, 18 sorghum, 14 rice, five pearl millet,18 cowpea, three groundnut, 24 cassava, 19 yam, three potato and three tomato varieties.
In his own speech, Prof. Olusoji Olufajo, chairman Technical Sub Committee (Crops) said his committee had adopted the recommendation of the ad-hoc committee set up by NVRC on funding.
Olufajo said it was recommended that anybody submitting publicly bred material should be charged N50,000 and privately bred material should be charged N200,000 application fees for registration per crop variety/hybrid.
The 24th NVRC meeting held at NACGRAB was attended by crop scientists, breeders, seed companies and agriculture experts from all over the country.