PHHSA for timely steps to cope with decreasing area of arable land

LAHORE    -   Pakistan needs to take timely measures to offset emerging challenges of fast decreasing area of arable land and looming water scarcity, which poses a serious threat to food security especially rice cultivation in the country. Talking to the media here Sunday, Pakistan Hitech Hybrid Seed Association (PHHSA) Chairman Shahzad Ali Malik said that rice is a staple food crop and a critical component of Pakistan’s agriculture sector, contributing substantially to the national economy and food security. However, increasing urbanisation, industrial expansion, and climate change are progressively reducing the area of arable land and water available for agriculture/farming. The PHHSA chief suggested that in order to mitigate these issues, it is imperative to adopt advanced agricultural technologies and sustainable practices that can enhance productivity while conserving resources. He mentioned that development and adoption of drought-resistant and high-yielding Guard hybrid rice seed varieties through genetic modification and traditional breeding techniques play a crucial role. He claimed that these varieties could thrive in less water-intensive conditions and are more resilient to the impacts of climate change. Investing in research and development to innovate such crops is essential, he said, asserting that collaborative efforts between the farmers and agricultural research institutions, including Guard Agricultural Research and Services Division, are crucial in implementing these research technologies and practices effectively.

Imparting training and resources to farmers can facilitate the transition to these new methods, ensuring sustainable rice production in Pakistan amidst dwindling land and water resources.

Malik said, “Precision agriculture is one such approach that utilises GPS, remote sensing, and data analytics to optimise field-level management regarding crop farming. This technology helps in efficient water usage, better pest control, and appropriate fertiliser application, which can lead to higher yields with fewer inputs.”

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt