The local rice industry is set to receive a boost when the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) Commissions its new facilities at the Burma Rice Development station, Mahaicony.
The Board recently invited bids for the installation of a seed paddy storage bond, storage bin and seed cleaning equipment at its research and development facility.
Head of the GRDB, Nizam Hassan said the cost of the project is to be borne by the GRDB from its $360M research and extension budget for2016.
The GRDB is the agency responsible for research and development in the rice sector and also spearheads the marketing of Guyana’s rice.
According to Hassan, the research and development station is currently involved in more than 500 lines of research aimed at improving rice quality and productivity of the sector. Among the areas of research being undertaken by the research and development agency are, plant pathology, agronomy, plant breeding for the development of new varieties, paddy bug management and salinity testing.
The agency also provides pre and post crop support services to rice farmers in the areas of land preparation, crop management, quality control and the preparation of export documentation.
Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo responding to a motion brought to the National Assembly recently on the state of the rice industry by opposition member, Irfaan Ali, pointed out that the problems facing the rice sector were inherited by the coalition government and not of their making.
The Prime Minister in his presentation to the House, highlighted the inappropriate use of several lines of funding which were available under the previous administration to alleviate the plight of rice farmers but which were not spent to benefit the sector or rice farmers.