Duration: 01/Jan/2004 - 31/Dec/2009
Project contact: CT Hash
Donor: Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)-Australia
The aim of this project was to improve overall animal productivity in crop-livestock systems of India by increasing the nutritive value of pearl millet stover. Pearl millet is the only reliably productive cereal in rainfed areas of north-western India, where pearl millet stover accounts for over 30% of fodder resources available, so genetic improvement of pearl millet stover yield and quality is considered the only practical way to improve the productivity and economic returns of this rainfed crop-livestock production system without substantial public and/or private investments in irrigation and other infrastructure. Until this project came about, only limited attention had been paid by cereal breeders in India to either the quantity or quality of stover, despite the high value placed on this component of the crop by farmers in crop-livestock systems. This project attempted to redress this problem, by focusing on genetically improving the yield and quality of crop stover, while maintaining grain yield and other important agronomic traits of adapted, farmer-accepted, dual-purpose crop cultivars.