This page features a compilation and selection of Sri Lanka seed industry news briefs, summaries and leads, with an emphasis on events that impact or affect provinces, regions, counties, cities and locales in Sri Lanka.
The news covers trends and events regarding seed regulation, testing, legislation, phytosanitary issues, intellectual property rights, biotechnology (genomics, gene-editing) plant breeding, agronomy and cropping, with original sources linked.
This page will be updated throughout the year, with most recent briefs listed first.
Standing paddy stunted due to lack of fertilizer, yields plummet: August 17: Rice crop throughout most of the major growing belt of Sri Lanka is stunted for the second successive season due to deficiency of fertilizer, “In 10,900 hectares of land under cultivation in Kilinochchi, the average yield is likely to hit 2.3 metric tons per hectare . . . In previous years, paddy fields in the area delivered around 4.5 metric tons per hectare.” According to government data, 2 million people in the country are rice farmers. The World Food Programme estimates that about 6.7 million Sri Lankans out of a population of 22 million are not eating enough. Source.
Indian urea suitable for crop cultivation: July 12: The Sri Lankan government has confirmed that urea supplies from India will be suitable for the cultivation of paddy and other crops. A total of 44,000 tonnes of urea was imported from India to alleviate shortages in the crisis-hit country, which anticipates food shortages by mid-August. The initial consignment is part of 65,000 tonnes Indian loan assistance program pledged since May. The urea will be distributed to agricultural service centers across the island by Ceylon Commercial Fertiliser Company. A controversial decision by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa last year to ban chemical fertiliser imports is being blamed for a food shortage and crop losses. Sri Lanka's total foreign debt reportedly stands at US$ 51 billion. Source.
Officials granted one work day week for agriculture: June 13: Among decisions taken at the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers held on June 13 was a policy to encourage public officials to engage in agriculture and cultivation by granting government officials leave for one working day of the week and provide them with the necessary facilities to engage in agricultural activities in their backyards or elsewhere as a solution to the food shortage that is anticipated in the near future. The proposal, which was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers, is to close all
government institutions except agencies providing essential services on Fridays for the next three months. Source. See also details about Sri Lanka’s current economic spiral, including relevant factors related to food, energy and geopolitical situations affecting supply chains. Source.