Collaborative Potato Breeding for Yield Stability and Micronutrient Density



The project tries to address food security, human nutrition, and sustainable agriculture issues, including micronutrient deficiencies and the need for yield stability of highland potato cropping systems in central and western Nepal and central and eastern Bhutan. The project will address these issues through breeding for high micronutrient content and yield stability, decentralized participatory selection of new varieties, and increasingly intelligent targeting of breeding objectives based on accurate human nutrition baseline knowledge. The project was prioritized by researchers and development agents in the Himalayas-Hindu Kush region as part of a much needed food-based approach to combat malnutrition in isolated regions at high altitudes.

The project addresses the need to improve the nutrition of potato-consuming rural populations in Nepal and Bhutan through the development of new potato varieties with enhanced nutritional quality, local adaptability to mountain production systems, disease resistance, and acceptability to consumers and actors in target value chains. This project will contribute to closing the gap between Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) and current (deficient) levels of micronutrient intake in rural areas of both countries where malnutrition, potato cultivation, and consumption overlap. It will do so through a food-based approach that prioritizes collaborative breeding for high micronutrient content and yield stability, decentralized participatory selection of new varieties, and increasingly intelligent targeting of breeding objectives based on accurate human nutrition baseline knowledge.

Project Details
Countries: Nepal
Working districts: Jumla
Project Duration: 2012 - 2015
Partners: International Potato Centre, National Potato Development Programme, National Potato Research Programme
Funded by: Austrian Development Agency, International Potato Centre
Contact Person: Rajeev Dhakal