NEW DELHI: Biotechnology and other new technological developments in the field of agriculture would enhance the food production in the country, the government informed Lok Sabha on Monday.
Minister of State for Agriculture, Kanti Lal Bhuria said biotechnology, besides improving economic and social benefits, would also contribute to increase crop productivity, lower production costs, conserve bio-diversity and increase stability of production to lessen suffering during famines.
He said the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) is developing improved varieties with high yield potential, tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses and better quality traits through bio-technological interventions.
The government has also taken many steps for infrastructural development for research in biotechnology and human resource development through out India, he said
"Other technologies like Geographic Information System, Remote Sensing, Global Position System and Simulation Modelling have helped in increasing agriculture production," he told in a written reply to Lok Sabha.
The minister said using radiation-induced mutation and cross-breeding, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has developed 29 improved varieties and released for commercial cultivation. These comprise 16 in oilseeds, 11 in pulses and one each in rice and jute.
Replying to a query on application of nanotechnology for improving the production, the minister said, "Nanotechnology has potential in enhancing resource use efficiency in terms of soil-water-nutrient-pesticide through development of suitable nano-products and biosensors".
"The potential, however, remains to be harnessed," Bhuria said.