Banana Outscaling Project in Mindanao

Dr. Agustin Molina with resistant variants
from Taiwan planted at Lapanday plantation
in Callawa, Davao City.

Bioversity International and the Bureau of Agricultural Research of the Department of Agriculture are collaborating to outscale or plant in small Cavendish farmers’ farms in Mindanao two Cavendish variants from Taiwan which have been observed to be resistant to the Fusarium Wilt TR4 currently threatening big and small Cavendish plantations in Mindanao.
Dr. Agustin Molina is the top man of Bioversity in the region and he will be working closely with DA-BAR’s Nicomedes Eleazar in implementing the project starting next month. The project will run for three years and is expected to enable the farmers to continue producing Cavendish for export. The Bureau of Plant Industry will also be collaborating.
The banana variants from Taiwan that have been observed to be resistant to the Fusarium Wilt Race 4 are No. 119 and 219. These have been previously planted in areas that were infected with the disease in the Callawa plantation of Lapanday Food Corporation and have so far remained uninfected by the disease..
We visited the place last March 19 together with Dr. Molina who had earlier collaborated with Lapanday in testing the said variants, also referred to as somaclones. Dr. Molina told us that somaclones are variants in tissue-cultured plants with desirable characteristics.
The fruit bunches of 119 and 219 are a bit smaller than the conventional Cavendish grown for export but the fruits are sweeter which is one quality that most Japanese importers are looking for.
Lapanday will produce the tissue-cultured planting materials to be used for planting by the small scale farmers, most of them contract growers of the big companies.It is hoped that the farmers will be able to continue producing  export quality bananas with the two resistant variants.
DA-BAR has been helping a lot of private entrepreneurs involved in agricultural pursuits. One of the beneficiaries of DA-BAR’s assistance is Antonio Arcangel of Batac City who has been developing various products from Sweet Sorghum.

Another is Engr. Gigi Zaballero of Ahcil Laboratories in Cebu who developed Antica, an organic fungicide with bactericidal properties. Zaballero was given a cash grant by DA-BAR for the field testing of Antica on rice diseases.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.