Closing yield gap of wheat can reduce food insecurity in WANA region

October 31, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Food security is the major concern of WANA countries characterized by water scarcity and drought which will be exacerbated by climate change. However, despite these environmental constraints, ICARDA and NARS scientists showed that yield of wheat, a staple food in the area, can be significantly increased if improved varieties and crop management are adopted. The yield improvement will increase wheat production and contribute to the reduction of food insecurity. To evaluate the importance of the improved technologies/techniques, the Integrated Water and Land Management Program of ICARDA conducted a wheat yield gap assessment study in selected countries of WANA, Morocco, Syria and Turkey using farmers, (district, province yields), on-farm trials, research  station and CropSyst model simulated yields. Results showed that wheat yield can be increased by 1.7-2.0 times in Syria, 1.6-2.5 times in Morocco and 1.5-3.0 times in Turkey. It was concluded that there is large potential for increase in the wheat yields in the WANA region, especially in rainfed areas, and improved management practices along with improved varieties and supplemental irrigation can close the wide gaps between farmers’ yields and those achieved at research stations and on-farm demonstration trials. Further improvements will come from improved soil-water and nutrients management practices than those already practiced at the research stations and on-farm demonstrations.

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