LAHORE - The Punjab Seed Council has approved 39 new verities of different crops for general cultivation.

The new varieties included 15 Bt Cotton, six rice, two wheat, one Sugarcane, two Gram, three Citrus, four Peach, three flowers and one variety of each potato, tomato and turnip. The approval was granted in 44th meeting of the Council held at Agriculture House.

Agriculture minister Dr Farrukh Javed chaired the meeting which was attended by Dr Ijaz Muneer, Agriculture Secretary Khaqan Babar, Punjab Seed Corporation MD Dr Abid Mehmood, Agriculture (Research) DG Dr. Anjam Ali and others. The representatives of NIAB, NIBGE, Federal Seed Certification and Registration Department, Pakistan Cotton Growers Association, APTMA, PCGA and farmers were also present on occasion.

The breeders of varieties presented the cases of their varieties for approval by highlighting trial results and performance of the candidate varieties and their characteristics. After discussing at length and keeping in view the data presented for candidate varieties 15 new BT varieties FH-118, FH-142, VH-259, BH-178, CIM-599, CIM-602, IR-NIAB-824, IUB-222, CEMB-33, SAIBAN-201, SITARA 11M, A-555, KZ-181, Tarzan-2 and CA-12 were provisionally approved for general cultivation keeping in view the issues of National Bio-safety Committee (NBC). Similarly, approval of new six rice verities including RSP-2, PK-386, HB-71, Y-26, Shahnshah-2 and Pride-1 were also approved by Punjab Seed Council.

The approval of two wheat verities (Pakistan-2013 & Galaxy-2013), one sugarcane variety (CPF-248), two gram varieties (Noor-2013 & Tamman), three citrus varieties (Pak- Kino, SG-Feutral’s Early & CRI-Salustiana), four peach varieties (A-669, Early Grand, Plain-4 & Florida Kind), three flowers varieties (Golden Bloom, Flaming Beauty & Ahmer Bloom) and one each of potato, tomato and turnip was also granted.

Agriculture minister congratulated the breeders of new varieties and appreciated their contribution in agriculture sector.