The Center for Breeding and Primary Seed Production of the Ekosem-Agrar Group announces the results of its work for 2021.
6 January 2022 News from the Company
One of the most important achievements is the submission of five new varieties for state testing: three winter wheat varieties as well as two soybean varieties. These are the winter wheat varieties EN Isis, EN Polarnik and EN Altais for the Central Black Earth and Middle Volga regions, and the two soybean varieties, EN-1107 also for the aforementioned regions and EN-1319-2 for the Western Siberia region.
For local ecological-geographical testing of breeding lines under specific climatic conditions, two regional branches of the Seed Breeding Center were opened in 2021 in Voronezh and Novosibirsk regions. It is also planned to establish two more branches in Ryazan and Bashkiria.
The center continues its active breeding work with biotechnological methods such as marker-assisted and genomic selection. This allows the rapid and efficient identification of lines with specific economically useful as well as biological traits, such as protein content, photoperiodic response or drought tolerance.
"This year, as part of our collaboration with the All-Russian Research Institute of Agricultural Microbiology in St. Petersburg, we were able to determine the response of varieties to different strains of inoculants (i.e. biopreparations that promote better plant development). This, in turn, will enable the company to sell agricultural producers a so-called "package solution" - a variety and a matching inoculant - in the future," explains Vitaly Voloshchenko, head of the Center for Breeding and Primary Seed Production of EkoNiva.
Ekosem-Agrar Group has been working on the development of high-performance varieties since 2018. At that time, Russia's first private breeding and primary seed center with a comprehensive breeding program for winter wheat was opened in the immediate vicinity of the Zashtchitnoye seed breeding farm. In 2019, a soybean breeding project was launched. Meanwhile, a total of 15 winter wheat varieties and as well as five soybean varieties from own breeding have been submitted for registration to the State Variety Commission. Three winter wheat varieties, EN Cepheus, EN Albireo, EN Taygeta, and one soybean variety, EN Argenta, have already been included in the state register of approved varieties authorized for use in Russia.
"EkoNiva is a driving force in the field of breeding and seed production, as well as one of the main serious players in Russia in this area. In the coming year, we intend to actively continue the projects we have started in order to continue providing Russian farmers with high-quality seeds," says Vitaly Voloshchenko.
The breeding center actively cooperates with agricultural universities to attract young specialists to science. In four years, 55 students from 15 Russian universities have completed internships at the EkoNiva seed center as part of the personnel project "Vavilov's Student Team". Four graduates were subsequently hired by EkoNiva to work here.
"The technical equipment, highly qualified personnel, location at a local proximity to one of the best seed farms in the country and close cooperation with the company "EkoNiva-Semena" are clear competitive advantages of the EkoNiva seed breeding center, which allow the bred varieties to capture a significant market share and significantly drive the company's expansion of breeding programs," says Yuri Vasyukov, regional manager of the "Zashchitnoye" farm.