Garlic tissue culture lab seen to increase farmers’ yield
DEPARTMENT of Agriculture (DA) inaugurated Friday the Garlic Tissue Culture and Virus Indexing Laboratories in Sta. Barbara town.
Implemented through the University of the Philippines Los Banos Foundation, Inc. and with funding support from the Bureau of Plant Industry, Pangasinan Research Center in Sta. Barbara town was selected as a laboratory site for garlic tissue culture.
With a total operation cost of P5.84 million, the facility is already utilized by the DA and tissue culture laboratory personnel to test garlic varieties used by farmers in the region like Ilocos Pink, Batanes White, Romblon, and more on Ilocos white thereby producing a total of 2,000 virus-free culture bottles with 4-5 plantlets per bottle.
At the turnover program, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said the recent national food summit identified garlic as one of the commodity industry that needs to be developed.
Considered as high-value crop, garlic is also known as ‘white gold’ in the region.
With the virus-free planting materials that will be produced through tissue culturing, garlic production in the region is expected to increase by 40-45 percent, according to DA Regional Executive Director Nestor Domenden.
Dr. Jonar Yago, Assistant Director for Research & Development and Pest Management in the Bureau of Plant Industry, said the will be increase the garlic farmer’s yield because of the quality plant material for garlic that will be used.
The fully-equipped laboratory utilizes RT-PCR technology for the detection of viruses. It is also capable of analyzing the presence or absence of various viruses affecting garlic and will also serve as the primary virus indexing laboratory in the region, Domenden added.
Also inaugurated were Crops Research and Development Center in Pangasinan Research & Experiment Center (PREC),
Meanwhile, the DA also distributed farm inputs and machinery to different farmer groups in the province. (Eva Visperas/Jerick Pasiliao)
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