A Welcome Speech on Green Super Rice

August 1st, 2016

I am pleased to welcome you in what has become a tradition of workshops and launching here at our Institute.  As mentioned earlier, I have become a “suki” (regular) in most activities such as what we are having right now. And I find it a challenge to come up with words that I hope may contribute towards fulfilling your visions and goals, specifically in advancing plant breeding and rice sector as a whole.

Today, let us put the spotlight on your plans and strategies about the “Green Super Rice” or GSR Project. I suppose not everyone here has yet fully-known what Green Super Rice is, myself included. I breezed through the program given and found out that GSR is a joint brainchild of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Chinese Government.

PhilRice would be a good institution to aid in this endeavor. Why? Primarily because with this, we will be able to address the pressing need to re-examine rice research priorities and constraints for rice production, and identify areas of collaborative rice research and other initiatives like adaptation trials, and on farm demo of promising GSR materials that would create socio-economic impact in the target regions of the Philippines.

To me, GSR project is a very noble and inspiring cause since: 1) it backs-up the clamor to save and protect our environment from further devastation, and 2) it seeks to address the world’s food problem. GSR, which is referred to as “doubly green revolution,” aims to produce high and stable yield for the resource-poor of the world, particularly Africa and Asia, but with less inputs. Translated into concrete terms, this means developing new cultivars within the next three years that ensure high and stable yields with less use of water, fertilizer, and pesticides.

It is worth noting as well, that here in our country, the government is already actively guarding water tributaries against pollution loading. We are, of course, aware that even if we get high yield in our production, but if we use very high inputs, we are contributing towards tremendous surface pollution. A mandamus from the Supreme Court requires us now to help build effective liquid waste management. I am glad that GSR may help arrest immediate degradation of bodies of water, aside from targeting rice-sufficiency.

Later today, our guests will tackle more on partnerships, the GSR project status in Asia with special focus on the Philippines, and the status of rice production in our country. Likewise, we will be oriented about future climate change scenario and testing climate change-ready GSR materials, as well as the economic impact assessment for target regions in the Philippines under the GSR project.

I enjoin everyone to grab this opportunity to learn and participate, and to have fun at the same time!

As Aristotle puts it: “Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.” Again, welcome, everyone, and have a very pleasant morning!

*This was written by yours truly and delivered by my boss during the seminar on “Rice Research Priorities for Philippines under Green Super Rice Project ” last 23 January 2012 at the Science City of Munoz, Nueva Ecija

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