Sri Lanka currently produces 96 percent of its consumption requirements of rice. However, to meet growing needs, more rice will have to be produced in the country.
Increasing production is a serious challenge to farmers and policymakers as many resources continue to limit productivity, including land, labour, water and chemicals.
Rice Research and Development Institute
The main institution under the Department of Agriculture (DOA) mandated with the task of improving rice production and technology application is the Rice Research and Development Institute (RRDI). The RRDI is located at Batalagoda, in the Kurunegala district.
What are important functions of the RRDI?
- Research high yielding rice varieties and introduce improved rice production and crop protection technologies
- Research soil fertility and sustainability management
- Research pest, disease and weed control methods
- Improve post harvest activity
- Research crop physiology to changing resource availability and changes in climatic conditions
Regional Rice Research Development Centre
The RRDI is assisted by the Regional Rice Research Development Centre located at Bombuwala, in the Kalutara district with its two agricultural research stations at Labuduwa and Bentota.
The centre and the research stations have broad responsibilities for developing new rice varieties, technologies and strategies to improve rice production in the Low Country Wet Zone region of Sri Lanka.
Rice Research Stations
The RRDI is assisted by two rice research stations strategically located in Ambalantota and Sammanthurai.
The rice research station at Ambalantota is responsible for development work for the Southern rice belt of the country.
The rice research station at Sammanthurai in Ampara is tasked with handling rice cultivation issues in the Eastern Province of the country.
(Information courtesy, Dept. of Agriculture-DOA, Sri Lanka. www.agridept.gov.lk)