Improved oil palm seeds: IRAD produces more than 5,000,000 100% Tenera seeds at the Dibamba Station

semences amelioreesIRAD has never achieved such a great performance in the development of the oil palm sector, through its Specialized Station of Agricultural Research on Oil Palm of Dibamba (Littoral region).

Indeed, thanks to the support of the African Development Bank (ADB), the recruitment of new researchers and good governance driven by the Director General, Dr. Noé WOIN, the Station IRAD-Dibamba has made available more than 5 000 000 (more than 25 000 ha of palm groves, that is to say 200 germinated seeds per ha and an average of 5 000 bunches of assisted fertilization harvested) of 100% Tenera seeds (with the possibility of going further).

Tenera is a hybrid variety obtained from the crossing of Dura (female parent) and Pisifera (male parent). A variety with a very high yield (3.5 to 4 tons of palm oil per hectare per year) and tolerant to fusariosis (cryptogamic disease that attacks more oil palms).

It is a variety recommended for the regions of the South-West, the North-West and the West, which are more affected by fusariosis.

Very early, Tenera, unlike Dura (low yield) and Pisifera (abortive), starts to produce from 3 years for a continuous exploitation at least 25 years. For one hectare of land, it requires 143 plants.

Researchers at the IRAD-Dibamba Station are unanimous in recognizing that the ADB-funded project (PD-CVA) has significantly improved the yield of palm groves in terms of bunches (2,000 to 3,000 t) during 2019 and 2020, the maintenance of plots (pruning, trimming, gyro-cutting and roto-cutting) and the increase of casual labor.

For the record, the PD-CVA supported by the pan-African institution is an initiative of the Cameroonian government that focuses on improving the competitiveness of the pineapple, plantain and oil palm sectors, and the creation of jobs and wealth to reduce poverty through the contribution of agricultural value chains in the three sectors.

IRAD distributes 8.5 tons of improved seeds to farmers' organizations in Figuil

The ceremony chaired by Mrs. Sub-Prefect of the Arrondissement of Figuil (North Region), Adda Souratou Soureya, was held on May 27, 2021.

"02 tons of sorghum (Muskwari and S35), 03 tons of maize, 03 tons of lowland rice and 500 kg of cashew seeds". This makes nearly 5,000 ha of sowing for the 8.5 tons of seeds with high yield potential and resistant to crop diseases and climate hazards. This is the composition of the donation of seeds produced by the Institute of Agricultural Research for Development (IRAD) headed by Dr. Noé Woin, which was distributed free of charge to about fifty agricultural cooperatives and common initiative groups (GIC) in the Figuil district on May 27. This solemnity comes more than a month after the one in Bibémi, in the Benue department.

Clearly, this plant material of proven quality will enable the people of this important agricultural production basin in the department of Mayo Louti to start the 2021 agricultural season under better auspices. Especially since, according to the head of the IRAD-Maroua Center, Dr. Sali Bourou, representing the Director General of IRAD on this occasion, "the 2020 agricultural season in Figuil has experienced the adverse effects of rainfall variability combined with those of the COVID-19 pandemic. A real breath of fresh air for these populations when we know, according to experts, that the seed contributes up to 40℅ on the yield.

During her speech, Mrs. Adda Souratou Soureya, the sub-prefect, will specify that: "The gesture of IRAD is part of the government action for the realization of the policy of Great Achievements of the Head of State, Paul Biya, especially with regard to the reduction of poverty in the peasantry, emergency measures against the high cost of living and the response to the effects of the pandemic at COVID-19", As a good mother, Mrs. Adda invited the lucky beneficiaries to make good use of the seeds received, "in order to increase local production to contribute to the national economy in this period of pandemic related to COVID-19. For his tireless efforts in supporting rural populations, the mayor of the locality, Mana Messingué, thanked IRAD and its General Manager, Dr. Noé Woin. And the beneficiaries, through their representative, expressed their thanks to the public authorities. The ceremony ended with a guided tour of the exhibition stand of agricultural prowess and innovations of the institute secular arm of the state in agricultural development.

It should be noted that the distribution of cashew nuts to producers is part of a project prescribed by the President of the Republic in order to diversify cash crops across the country, boost the production of cashew nuts highly prized internationally and make Cameroon a potential exporting country, improve the incomes of producers and consequently reduce the level of poverty of the population, precisely in the northern and eastern parts of the country. Already in 3 campaigns (2018, 2019 and 2020), more than 4,000,000 cashew and Acacia senegal seedlings (i.e. more than 40,000 ha of land) have been produced and distributed free of charge to the populations by IRAD.

Job opportunities: IRAD presents its agricultural research prowess to the youth of Kribi

As part of the Open House Days (JPO) 2021 of the Ministry of Secondary Education (MINESEC) at the Technical High School of Kribi (Department of the Ocean, Southern Region), on March 25, in the presence of the Minister Pr. Pauline NALOVA LYONGA and the authorities of the city, the Institute of Agricultural Research for Development (IRAD) managed by Dr. Noé WOIN has discovered its activities in this part of the country.

It was through its operational structures that are the Experimental Research Station on Marine Ecosystems (SERECOMA) of Kribi and the Station of Agricultural Valorization of Nko'olong (SVAN).

In strict compliance with the barrier measures against COVID-19, under the leadership of the Head of SERECOMA, Dr. Sylvie Carole NTYAM, the results of the work on fish pathologies that usually cause heavy losses in the breeding process were presented to the authorities and students of the seaside town.

In order to edify all and especially to sharpen the creative genius of the students of Kribi to orient themselves towards the attractive fields of scientific and technical research, the working material as well as the results of the Station on the biodiversity of marine and coastal organisms were exposed.

It was also showcased species of aquatic organisms preserved in a liquid fixative and the presentation of the results of aquaculture with the exhibition in oxygenated aquariums of species of marine fish (bass, discus, sole) and freshwater fish (catfish or clarias).

Under the aegis of the Chief, Dr. René MENOH in NGON, SVAN displayed the large collection of rubber clones available in the station, products derived from latex, the technique of grafting rubber, rubber seedlings and latex coagulates; high-yielding and disease-resistant cassava varieties (8034) from IRAD; the cassava processing chain into semi-finished (cucumbers) and finished products (gari, sticks, bread, cake, pasta ).

Visibly amazed by the talks and the prowess of the researchers of IRAD contemplated, at the end of the visit of the exhibition stands, a good number of students expressed their satisfaction, not without promising to specialize in these fields after obtaining the baccalaureate.

As a reminder, the SERECOMA (ex-CERECOMA) has the mission to conduct research of the Institute in the maritime and coastal area, in order to promote the welfare of people related to the maritime and coastal area (Atlantic Ocean), while the SVAN is responsible for the valorization of research results on latex plants, roots and tubers.

The Communication Unit

Presentation of the WAVE action plan

IRAD General Manager presides over the presentation ceremony of the action plan for the fight against cassava viral diseases of the WAVE programme, on 18 May 2021 in Yaounde.

In the presence of experts of the cassava sector, representatives of development partners and sectoral ministries, the Director General of IRAD, Dr Noé WOIN, solemnly launched the presentation of the action plan for the control of viral diseases of cassava of the Central and West African Viral Epidemiology for Food Security (WAVE) programme, on Tuesday, May 18, 2021, at the Institute's Hall of Records in Yaounde.

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Opening of the meeting by the DG

The African cassava mosaic disease caused by Germinviruses is the main constraint to cassava production. It can lead to a 40 to 70% loss of yield, which can result in an annual economic loss of 2 to 3 billion dollars (about 1000 to 1500 billion FCFA) for sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, the cassava brown streak disease, which is rampant in East Africa and is spreading to Central and West Africa, is adding to the threat to production, with losses that can reach 90 or even 100%," the IRAD Director General said at the outset of his speech at the opening of the seminar, which focused on the strategy for combating viral diseases of cassava.

And aware of the seriousness of this situation, according to Dr. Noé WOIN, "IRAD is involved in several projects and programmes to improve cassava productivity and fight against viral diseases". Among them is the WAVE programme, based in Abidjan (Côte d'Ivoire).

Through this programme supported by the Bill & Melinda GATES Foundation (USA), IRAD's biotechnology laboratory has focused on the characterisation of plants, viruses and other plant pathogens.

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For some reason, the WAVE programme focuses on cassava mosaic disease control and cassava brown streak prevention. In order to preserve Cameroon from the latter disease with very devastating consequences, IRAD researchers have set up a protection and response plan.

According to the organisers, this conclave enabled participants to improve their knowledge on cassava viral diseases, to be briefed on the action plan for effective management, mitigation and control of cassava viral disease threats, to define the role and responsibility of stakeholders in the prevention of cassava brown streak and to identify the next steps for the implementation of the valuable document.

Visit of the General Manager to Wakwa

The DG of IRAD, Dr Noé WOÏN, on a 3-day working visit to the Agricultural Research Center (ARC) of Wakwa.

Accompanied by senior researchers, Dr. Noé WOÏN made a working visit, from March 1 to 3, 2021, in the Operational Structure of the Institute located in the city of Ngaoundéré (Adamaoua region). For a productive and competitive research, he gave priority to cattle, pig, beekeeping, aquaculture and poultry production.

According to the Director General of IRAD, the objective of this visit is to touch the difficulties encountered in the field by researchers and especially to reframe them for a more productive and competitive research.

Thus, researchers have been oriented in the direction of a research in line with the vision 2035 of the government and the National Development Strategy (SND30). "The results of IRAD must help the country to move forward in socio-economic terms. It is necessary to transform post-harvest agricultural products for the development of the country," he recommended to the thirty young researchers of the CRA of Wakwa, on March 1, 2021.

This was an opportunity for the Director of Research to present the priorities of the Institute, the secular arm of the State in agricultural development, likely to respond to import-substitution.

Visit of the nursery for the production of cashew seedlings...

To do this, the DG will ask these young people to leave the specialties chosen in faculty to launch into related areas of research in fallow (including aquaculture, beekeeping, fruit processing ...) and able to provide solutions to the current needs of populations.

Senior researchers Dr. DONGMO Thomas and Dr. SULEM YONG Steve, experts in animal production and aquaculture respectively, shared their expertise (continuous capacity building, attitude of a good researcher, current research opportunities in Wakwa, reflex to adapt to the context...) with the research whites.

Visit to the ox corral

The IRAD-Wakwa Center is very rich in animal and plant production activities and was visited by the DG and his entourage. Led by the head of the Center, Dr. OUMAROU PALOU, the guests of the day visited the nursery for the production of cashew and Acacia senegal (gum arabic) plants as well as other fruit trees (papaya solo, guava, mango, volkameriana lemon... ) and plantain plants, the corral with different breeds of cattle (Wakwa, Namdjis, Mbororo, Bokolo and Boudalé), the lake with high fish farming potential in the locality, the sprinkler irrigation system, the animal health laboratories (research units), the adaptability plot for Brachiaria varieties, the poultry pen (chickens, geese and guinea fowl), the pig pen, the storage warehouse for improved yam varieties, the agri-food laboratory for processing organic ginger produced locally.

As a reminder, the CRA of Wakwa is in charge of the implementation of activities on cattle, animal health and wildlife. It also ensures the conduct of research for the diversification of the agricultural production potential of this area in the areas of annual and perennial crops, production systems and forests, soil and environment.

By Pierre AMOUGOU 

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