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New Nutrient-rich Tomato and Brinjal Varieties Developed; Suitable for Terrace, Urban Gardening

Detail about the two new nutritious varieties of Tomatoes and brinjal developed by Punjab.

Swati Sharma
New Nutrient-rich Tomato Variety
New Nutrient-rich Tomato Variety

Punjab, known as the granary of India has come up with a few improved crop and vegetable varieties that are rich in nutrients and can make great contributions to the nutritional requirements of the country’s population.

‘PAU 1 Chapatti’ with low polyphenols & outstanding processing qualities has been selected for commercialization whereas wheat candidate varieties with high grain protein, high zinc, and low phytates (a chemical group that reduces the bioavailability of micro-nutrients and protein) and high carotenoids have been developed.

Moreover, Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) has offered to farmers two carotene-rich cherry tomato varieties known as Punjab Sona and Punjab Kesar & two anthocyanin-rich brinjal varieties called Punjab Raunak & Punjab Bharpoor with antioxidant properties. These are suitable for home/terrace/urban gardening. Low-cost, nutrient-rich home gardening pot mixture providing 40-50 percent higher productivity along with appropriately designed pots and pot props have also been developed.

PAU has also identified wild rice accession with high grain protein & genetic stocks with high iron content for breeding rice with improved nutritional value. High grain iron and zinc lines have been identified in inter-specific crosses of chickpea.  

The varieties and genetic stocks have been developed by the PAU with support from the Promotion of University Research & Scientific Excellence (PURSE) grant provided by the Department of Science & Technology (DST). Besides varieties, a number of technologies for value-added products from nutritionally enhanced varieties of cereals, pulses & vegetables are on the cards.

Protocols have been made for assessing insecticide resistance as well as the resurgence in rice planthopper, cotton whitefly & okra mites. Research has been done to study pathogen dynamics and molecular level variability in pathogen populations of potato scab, rice sheath blight & wheat yellow rust & has strengthened the resistance breeding-based strategy for management of these diseases.

Apart from environment-friendly approaches for pest management, a study on efficient rice straw management, promotion of soil health via carbon sequestration & lowering of greenhouse gas emissions has been conducted.

The PURSE grant sanctioned to Punjab Agri University in 2 phases has helped the University to set up large number of major research facilities & supported research by 40 students.

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