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China’s Hybrid Rice Cultivated Area Accumulates to 600 Million Hectares

Over the past five decades, China’s self-developed hybrid rice has been promoted in an accumulative cultivated area of 600 million hectares across the country, helping increase a total rice yield of 800 billion kg.

Rice is one of the most important staple foods for Chinese. Chinese scientist Yuan Longping, widely known as the “father of hybrid rice,” and his research team successfully cultivated the world’s first high-yield hybrid rice strain in 1973.

The latest hybrid rice cultivation data was released during an international seminar held in Central China’s Hunan province on Wednesday, in memory of the 50th anniversary of Yuan’s successful hybrid rice strain research.

China has seen its average yield per mu (about 0.067 hectares) of rice per season soar from 170 kg during the 1950s and 1960s to today’s 470 kg, said Bai Lianyang, an official from the Hunan Provincial Academy of Agricultural Sciences.

Currently, more than 17 million hectares of hybrid rice are planted in China each year, helping boost rice output by about 2.5 million tonnes and feed 80 million more people annually, Bai added.

So far, dozens of countries around the globe have carried out relevant research and trial planting of hybrid rice, while the overseas annual cultivated area of hybrid rice has reached nearly 8 million hectares in total.

Since the 1980s, China has trained more than 14,000 technical and management personnel for foreign countries in the fields of hybrid rice studies and planting.

Source: China Daily