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Disease-resistant variety to help cotton growers boost yields
07
Oct '11
A disease-resistant cotton variety developed by the Kenyan Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) is expected to help farmers boost their yields.

The new variety known as Hart 89 M has been certified to be resistant to attacks from cotton stainer pests and African boll worm. The reduced use of pesticides will increase the returns to cotton growers.

KARI will be distributing six kg of Hart 89 M seed to cotton cultivators and would also train them regarding how best to grow the crop.

The disease-resistant cotton seed was developed at the Mwea Tebere Cotton Research Station in 2008. It is found suitable for growing zones in the country's South Rift region and is expected to produce 2,500 kg of cotton on an acre of land under rain-fed farming. The yield can grow to 5,000 kg an acre with proper irrigation.

The Cotton Development Authority (CDA) is planning to raise production of cotton to 130,000 bales in Kenya by 2013, nearly double the present production of around 70,000 bales. It has also targeted to increase the minimum support price to Sh120 per kg in line with the international market prices from the current Sh65 a kg.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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