A market-driven approach is being integrated in the development of rice varieties, in which the combined preferences of farmers and consumers are considered. 

In a forum conducted Feb. 13 at PhilRice in Nueva Ecija, major breeding institutions developed the initial framework for a unified breeding network. They assessed whether their programs address the needs of the priority market segments identified by the Module 1 of the OneRicePH project. With complete characterization and profiling of market segments, the module is expected to develop product concepts to be considered as the blueprint of national rice breeding programs. 

“We initially identified 11 priority market segments covering 42 target provinces nationwide. The criteria for segmentation are the crop establishment method, maturity of variety, grain shape, cooking quality, and ecosystem. This approach is about developing a product concept that goes beyond the farmers’ preference but also of other rice value chain actors such as seed growers, millers, and consumers,” Shantel Chavez, one of the project researchers said.

Breeders in the forum also become cognizant of the requirements of the priority segments such as the essential grain quality, biotic, and abiotic traits favored by the  rice value chain actors.

OneRicePH project proponents and plant breeders from PhilRice, International Rice Research Institute, and University of the Philippines Los Baños joined the forum. 

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Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) is a government corporate entity attached to the Department of Agriculture created through Executive Order 1061 on 5 November 1985 (as amended) to help develop high-yielding and cost-reducing technologies so farmers can produce enough rice for all Filipinos.

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Philippine Rice Research Institute