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Tuesday, 21 May 2019 10:09

New hybrid to increase crop yield

Written by  Chimwemwe Njoloma
Kawamba speaking to the media at the demonstration farm in Chitedze. Pic by Chimwemwe Njoloma. (1) Kawamba speaking to the media at the demonstration farm in Chitedze. Pic by Chimwemwe Njoloma. (1)

Lilongwe, May 21, 2019: Monsanto Limited currently known as Bayer Crop Science has introduced a new maize hybrid seed, DK 777 on the market which is more tolerant to adverse environmental conditions.

Bayer Country Manager, Gift Kawamba disclosed this at the close of the week in Lilongwe during a field visit to Chitedze Prison Farm, one of the demonstration farms for the new hybrid.

Kawamba said the company decided to introduce the new hybrid after extensive research on the current environmental conditions such as droughts and fall army worms, which have contributed much to low crop yields for the past years.

He said the hybrid is more tolerant to the current adverse environmental conditions the country is facing.

“Today we are showcasing how this hybrid performs on the ground. We also wanted to show farmers across the country how they can benefit from it.

“It is more resistant to diseases and able to withstand adverse climatic conditions we are experiencing now.

“We are very happy that all things we hoped for the hybrid to do are what we are seeing today,” said Kawamba.

He said the hybrid has been tried across the country and in neighbouring countries like Tanzania, Zambia and Kenya where it has also proved to give potential yield far much more than other hybrids were giving.

“The hybrid has done wonders, not only in Malawi but also in our neighbouring countries.

“Let me make mention that the response from farmers has been good. We did an intensive marketing, showcasing it through road shows and the feedback from farmers after growing it is so overwhelming,” he said.

Kawamba said moving forward; DK 777 will be one of the big hybrids that will be pushed on the market so that a great number of people benefit from it and make Malawi a food secure country.

In an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) Deputy Director of Crop Development responsible for horticulture in the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, Eviness Nyalugwe who was guest of honour said she was impressed with what Bayer Crop Science’s showcasing the high yielding maize variety.

“I am very happy to learn that Bayer is providing a one-stop shop for seed and chemical requirement to our farmers.

“The demonstrations here have also provided an opportunity for them to interact with farmers and answer questions pertaining to the hybrid seed, which is a good move as far as agriculture is concerned,” said Nyalugwe.

Jonas Maulid, 27, an inmate at Maula Prison who was one of the inmates working on the demonstration farm (Chitedze Prison) said DK 777 has proved that it is the best hybrid farmers in the country should plant.