We have a highly qualified team of breeders, scientists and other technical staff dedicated to improving seed quality and yield. We carry out the following activities:
- Research and testing in various agro-ecological zones
- Produce and maintain parent seed lines
- Contract out-growers for production of certified seed
In addition, our R&D department conducts the following activities:
Each year nurseries are planted to increase seed, develop new in-bred lines, make hybrids and maintain fixed lines
- Trials are carried out to determine general combining ability (GCA) in test crosses and specific combining ability (SCA) in formed hybrids
- Replicated, multi-locational in alpha lattice design
In both nurseries and trials, selections are made for desirable traits and stress tolerance.
In addition to operating nurseries and conducting trials, the R&D department employs the following process:
- Conventional breeding by formation of F2s and HT Group populations and subsequent in-bred line extraction.
- Formation of test crosses with known HT Group testers.
- Formation of hybrids using in-breds with known GCA.
- Data is collected from both nurseries and trials on PDAs for all traits and yield, they are subsequently analyzed statistically.
- Germplasm is shared with collaborators and sourced from all over the world. It is maintained in cold rooms for a number of years and basic seed is maintained in cold rooms for 2-5 years.