English > NEWS&EVENTS > Content

Hubei’s Output of Ratoon Rice Leads in China

(Chutian Metropolis Daily Journalist Le Yi, Correspondent Liu Tao) Gone are the days when we Chinese could only admire the world-famous Thai Fragrance Rice for its unique glutinous texture. Today, Central China's Hubei Province has seen a massive cultivation of high-yield ratoon rice, the quality of which might be potentially on a par with that of the Thai Fragrance Rice. A panel of domestic agricultural experts joined by seven academicians made a two-day observation trip to examine the ratoon rice field (October21-22) and their findings proved exhilarating.

Rice ratooning is a cropping system that uses dormant buds surviving on the rice stubble after the harvest of the main crop to help with another harvest that entails earing, blossoming and fruiting. The rice grown out of that method is free from pesticides and boasts a wonderful taste. However, despite its early discovery and plantation, its output has been consistently low.

Professor Peng Shaobing from HZAU, a distinguished expert of the Recruitment Program of Global Experts, set up a work team that endeavors to enhance the conventional way of ratoon rice cultivation, including aspects such as the selection and nurturing of its seedlings. Thanks to their many years of persistent efforts, approximately 2.2 million mu (about 146667 hectares) of farmland has been empowered with the high-yield technology. Such quality rice seeds as Liangyou 6326, and Fengliangyouwu 1 are selected for mechanical panicle harvesting, thus boosting the productivity of each mu (about 0.067 hectare) of the farmland to reach around 402 kg. Professor Zou Yingbin from Hunan Agricultural University, also a member of the Rice Expert Group from China's Ministry of Agriculture, announced that the yield takes the lead in China. The Academician Chen Wenfu from Shenyang Agricultural University echoed Prof. Zou’s view and expressed that the program of mechanical handling of ratoon rice has made remarkable progress in grappling with the technical challenges of the double cropping rice.

The significant achievement means that average citizens will not have to buy expensive Thai Fragrance Rice, because the home-gown ratoon rice is fast catching up. Reporters on the spot had a taste of the ratoon rice tinged with jasmine fragrance. It is said that the Hubei-produced ratoon rice has been available with its reasonable price of 12 RMB per kg.

(By Xiong Ying)