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ReNuAL

Plant Breeding and Genetics laboratory (PBGL)

The PBGL is part of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division for Food and Agriculture. The PBGL carries out adaptive R&D in developing more efficient methods in plant mutation breeding to improve food security. Methods in mutation induction, detection and breeding form the basis of training courses and assistance in capacity building to Member States. The PBGL also provides a large amount of service to Member States in plant mutation induction. Plant mutation breeding has a proud history, over 3000 mutant crop varieties in over 200 species have been released, the majority have been developed using gamma ray irradiation. The mutant varieties supply greater and more sustainable yields with better quality, and improved resistance to pests and diseases and tolerance to environmental stresses, such as drought, salinity and extreme temperatures.

The benefits of the ReNuAL project

Plant mutation breeding is seen as a major component of nuclear applications in future efforts for crop improvement to increase global food security. The renovation of the PBGL will assist more Member States to increase institutional capacity and establish national mutation breeding programmes for sustainable intensification of crop production. It will assist in providing and developing more efficient mutation techniques, such that the time from mutant induction to mutant variety release is cut to 2-4 years.


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