Biofortified Wheat Variety
The scientists at the Agharkar Research Institute have developed a new biofortified variety of durum wheat for eradicating malnutrition in India.
About the Variety
The Durum wheat variety MACS 4028 is a semi-dwarf variety of the cereal crop developed by the Agharkar Research Institute in Pune- an autonomous research centre under DST. It has 14.7% higher protein content than regular wheat and also other minerals like iron (46.1ppm) and zinc (40.3ppm).
The variety has shown resistance against a number of common diseases and pests that affect wheat crops in general- stem rust, leaf rust, foliar aphids, root aphids, and brown wheat mite.
Durum wheat is also called as pasta wheat or macaroni wheat. After the common wheat, it is the second most cultivated type of wheat in the world. The term ‘Durum’ is from Latin and means ‘hard’ in reference to its hardiness.
Biofortification is the practice of breeding crops to increase their nutritional value. This is done either through selective breeding or through genetic engineering. It is one of the strategies for eradicating malnutrition and ensuring nutritional security for the masses.
Category: Science & Technology Current Affairs