Fiji Sugar Research Institute accelerates sugar production after being affected by COVID-19

COVID-19 has adversely affected the present and future activities of the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji. One of the main goals of the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji is to

COVID-19 has adversely affected the present and future activities of the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji. One of the main goals of the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji is to uplift the standard of sugarcane research in Fiji including cane breeding. Technical officer Shazil Hassan said: “The major objective with respect to cane breeding is to achieve high yielding cane varieties with disease resistant characteristics as well as wide adaptation to different soil types and environment.

“Each year, from late April to the end of August, the breeding activities of the Sugar Research Institute of Fiji Crop Improvement team focus on the first step in the process of plant improvement, known as Crossing.” “Crossing involves bringing together two complementary parents to produce sexual seeds from which, hopefully, a new variety will develop with favourable characteristics that will result in it being selected for commercial planting.” The institute has a breeding facility known as crossing shed at its substation in Dobuilevu, Ra (Dobuilevu favors natural synchronisation) for the establishment of bi-parental crosses in lanterns.

“Due to current lockdowns and movement restrictions, some varieties that flowered early could not be used for breeding.” “We are confident that we will surpass these difficult times and hope for relaxation on movement so we can help the sugar industry through research and technology.”