Provisia Rice Production System breeding program on the fast track

Frances Gould, Schultz, Bruce  |  3/4/2015 1:28:14 AM

Rice seed is flown onto a field. Randy Price, LSU AgCenter engineer, is working on an improved system to measure the efficiency of aerial and land applications of seed and fertilizer. Photo by Johnny Saichuk

Work to develop the Provisia Rice Production System has been accelerated, and breeding lines are being grown this winter in South America for a yield test.

“We’re on a fast track to get something out as quickly as we can,” said LSU AgCenter rice breeder Steve Linscombe. “We’re putting a lot of time and effort into the Provisia system.”

Linscombe said it’s hopeful this technology will be readily available within the next few years.

The research will be conducted near the city of Concepción del Uruguay in Argentina, which is similar to the rice-growing region in Louisiana. “We actually did something very similar when we were working to get the first Clearfield varieties out,” Linscombe said.

Provisia rice will be used with the herbicide quizalofop to eliminate grasses, red rice and other undesired rice. “We are seeing more and more issues with weedy rice that is the result of outcrossings or volunteer rice that can’t be controlled with Newpath and Beyond,” he said.

Provisia will be vital to extending the viability of the Clearfield system and to clean up fields.

BASF holds the patent on the Provisia trait, which was developed with conventional plant breeding techniques. The corporation announced the breeding project this year with a press release that said, “The most advanced Provisia seed breeding program is the Louisiana State University Agriculture Center (LSU AgCenter) program. LSU AgCenter has proven to be a leading rice breeding program recognized globally for their breeding success.”

This article was published in the 2015 Louisiana Rice Research Board Annual Report.

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