Pakistan needs latest farm-tech for food security

LAHORE: The government sho­uld encourage and facilitate the farming community to adopt modern technologies to avoid post-harvest losses and increase agriculture production, Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Abdul Basit said on Thursday.

In a statement, the LCCI president said the agriculture sector was suffering due to multiple reasons.

He stressed the need for increasing the cropped area because the country is already running well short of per capita food availability.

The country’s almost 43 per cent labour force is dependent on agriculture, the yield gap in the four major crops is three times from the best producers in the world such as China and Egypt, he said, adding that low yield has contributed to the poverty in rural areas besides forcing the country to import agriculture produces to feed its population.

He said the fact should be an eye-opener that China produces two times more cotton and wheat per hectare and Egypt produces around three times more rice and sugarcane per hectare as compared to Pakistan.

Factors that are recommended to improve the yield are through large-scale introduction of hybrid seeds and mechanised farming, high efficiently irrigation systems such as drip irrigation and reduction in wastage of crop through introduction of privately owned storage facilities and cold storage facilities.

“The 21st century belongs to biotechnology and Pakistan has tremendous potential to emerge as biotechnology leader but to achieve the goal private sector, scientists, researchers and government will have to work hand-in-hand,” he added.

Courtesy Dawn