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A pioneer commercial plant tissue culture center officially launched production

The national and regional agricultural productivity is being severely hindered by unpredictable rainfall, shortage of improved varieties and diseases. Currently, improved varieties that are diseases resistant and other agricultural technologies are very much important to ensure productivity. As a result, Organization for Rehabilitation and Development in Amhara (ORDA) established a pioneer commercial plant tissue culture center at the regional capital Bahir Dar to benefit millions of farmers and investors working on agriculture.

The tissue culture center has launched in October, 2015. Since April 2016, the center has started off mother plant selection, initiation, multiplication, rooting and acclimatization of potato, banana, sugar beet and sugar cane plants.

Tissue culture involves the use of small pieces of plant tissue (explants) which are cultured in a nutrient medium under sterile conditions. Using the appropriate growing conditions for each explant type, plants can be induced to rapidly produce new shoots, and, with the addition of suitable hormones new roots. These plantlets can also be divided, usually at the shoot stage, to produce large numbers of new plantlets. The new plants can then be placed in soil and grown in the normal manner.

Tissue culture is used to produce large amounts of plants in a very short time compared to conventional propagation methods, establish and maintain virus free stock and maintain varieties of plants for research and development

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Inaccessibility of value chain- a hindrance to uplift agricultural productivity!

By Esubalew Dires

Ethiopia, known as "water tower of Africa" is potentially rich for agricultural productivity. Nevertheless, the country suffered a lot in poverty as it didn’t fully utilize its resources for longer years. Nowadays, modern irrigation schemes and improved agricultural technologies assist farmers to boost their productivity. In this case, Amhara region is considered as one of the most potential areas of production.

Organization for Rehabilitation and Development in Amhara (ORDA), funded by Canadian Feed the Children (CHF) and Global Affairs Canada (GAC), has been assisting areas of food insecure and drought occurring particularly in Dewa Chefa and Artima Fursi 10 selected kebeles. Market-Led Improved Livelihoods in Eastern Amhara (MILEAR) constructed farmers’ communal ponds, small irrigation schemes and supply of improved crop varieties. However, due to poor market chain, farmers have not been benefited from their productions. MILEAR project took the initiative of connecting farmers’ productions with a variety of marketers. Hence, ORDA conducted a consultative workshop with stakeholders in Bahir Dar, Homland Hotel on the 7th of June 2016.    

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