A two-day training program on hybrid pigeonpea technology was held at ICRISAT headquarters on 11-12 November, bringing together government officers, progressive farmers and entrepreneurs from Maharashtra, India. Over 20 senior officers from Department of Agriculture (DoA), Maharashtra and 12 progressive farmers including staff from Krishi Vigyan Kendras participated in this important training program.

During 2014 cropping season, the Government of Maharashtra promoted pigeonpea hybrid on 6000 ha through the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) scheme in collaboration with ICRISAT.

Despite the challenges such as climate change and soil degradation farmers cultivating the ICRISAT hybrids reported significant increase in pigeonpea yields.

A medium-duration hybrid, ICPH 2740 demonstrated 30-35% higher yields than other local varieties. Considering the performance and the increasing area of pigeonpea hybrids in Maharashtra, the StateGovernment requested ICRISAT to conduct training for their officers in hybrid technology for effective monitoring of OFTs and seed production fields.

Participants visited pigeonpea breeding fields, and seed production plots on the ICRISAT campus.

Field visits were also organized to pigeonpea fields in Tandur district, where participants got the opportunity to witness OFTs of hybrid pigeonpea. This activity was undertaken as a part of the CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes.

Adapted from ICRISAT Happenings