Faba bean: collaborative research with China

April 15, 2010 at 9:09 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Faba bean variety Yundoo 147, widely grown in Yunnan province. Left to right: Dr Ashutosh Sarker; Prof. Bao Shiying, Yunnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences; Dr Fouad Maalouf; Dr Zong Xuxiao, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences

China, as the world’s largest faba bean producer, is an important partner for ICARDA’s faba bean research program. Collaboration focuses on developing improved varieties with cold, drought and bruchid tolerance. A number of ICARDA materials are now being tested in different environments in China, by the Chinese Academy for Agriculture Sciences  and the Yunnan Academy for Agriculture Sciences. One major success has been Yundoo 147, a popular, high-yielding variety developed by crossing a Chinese landrace with an improved ICARDA line.

Two ICARDA scientists – Dr Fouad Maalouf, faba bean breeder, and Dr Ashutosh Sarker, Coordinator, South Asia and China Regional Program – participated in a faba bean workshop held in Beijing last month. Field visits during the workshop highlighted the potential of new lines under development, and the challenges still ahead. More than 4000 lines are being tested for cold tolerance in Qinadao province. Temperatures at the experimental site remained below –15˚C for more than 30 days. About 40 highly cold-tolerant lines survived, and will form the basis for a crossing program to develop new cold-tolerant varieties. An ICARDA nursery of low-tannin lines is being tested at another research site in Yunnan province. The lines are performing well, with good pod setting, suggesting they will give good yields in the target environment.

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