The productivity of major crops in the country has improved during 11th Plan Period. However, productivity of most of the crops in India is still lower as compared to international standards.
Major reasons for low productivity of various crops in the country as compared to other countries are small and fragmented land holdings, lack of irrigation facilities, improper nutrient and pest management, low use of good quality seeds, lack of adequate machinery and low adoption of improved package of practices, etc.
In order to enhance productivity of various agricultural crops Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) undertakes research programmes to increase the productivity of crops like cotton, maize, mustard, paddy, pulse, sugarcane and wheat through crop based research institutes. The research programmes include basic and strategic research related to crop improvement, crop production, crop protection, post harvest operations, value addition, etc.
The technical information so developed are used by crop specific All India Coordinated Research Projects situated in State Agricultural Universities to develop location specific varieties and technologies.
Total 136 improved varieties/ hybrids in these important crops have been released during 2010-11 by National Agricultural Research System (NARS). Apart from the varieties developed for high yield and tolerance to diseases, several trait specific varieties and crop production and protection technologies etc. have also been developed.
This information was given by Shri Harish Rawat, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries in written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha