International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

BSF Project - Third Cycle

Genetic base broadening and germplasm enhancement for the development of drought tolerant cultivars of wheat and barley in DPR Korea
Where are we working?
Wheat and barley are key crops in the DPR Korea, used to alleviate food shortages between June and August. However, yields have plummeted over the last 10 years (20-30% decrease per hectare), especially due to a prolonged period of drought from late April to June, which has increased in severity due to climate change.
Drought tolerant wheat and barley cultivars are not available, necessitating the development of wheat and barley lines with high drought tolerance. This Benefit-sharing project will address this urgent need by initiating breeding programmes of drought tolerant winter wheat and spring barley, thereby ensuring food security and strengthening resilience to climate change.

What are we doing?
  • Collection, characterization and conservation of 100 local and exotic accessions;
  • Crossing to produce five F2 generations for selection;
  • Technology transfer and establishment of a joint research programme between the Pyongyang Crop Genetic Resources Institute (DPR Korea) and the Julius Kühn-Institut (Germany) for the pre-breeding and breeding of elite drought tolerant cultivars of winter wheat and spring barley;
  • Organization of one international and six national training workshops for farmers and researchers to identify, use and conserve on-farm drought tolerant wheat and barley germplasm accessions.

What has been achieved to date?
The project will conserve, characterize and select local and exotic germplasm accessions of winter wheat and spring barley for drought tolerance breeding. The materials as well as associated information, including on breeding techniques and pre-breeding for drought tolerance, will be documented and disseminated both at home and abroad through the International Treaty’s Multilateral System. Local participatory breeding programmes for drought tolerance will be initiated.
Technologies for drought-tolerance breeding and germplasm management will be transferred from abroad, and capacity building of the national genebank, participating research institutes and the Academy of Agricultural Sciences (AAS) will be conducted. A reliable channel for the further transfer of advanced technologies from abroad will have been created.
Ultimately, drought-tolerant wheat and barley cultivars contributing to sustainable grain production under climate change will be developed.

Who has benefited?
63 researchers and two officials of the AAS will directly benefit from the training and capacity building provided through the project, as will three officials of Ministry of Agriculture, nine officials of provincial rural management boards, four officials of county management boards, nine managerial staff of nine cooperative farms. Over 600 farmers will benefit from farm trials.
Indirect beneficiaries include about 500 crop-related researchers and breeders, about 300 households (with four persons per household on average) connected to the participating farms, and ultimately, about 4,387,000 producers at about 3080 co-operative farms, crop breeders, breeding institutes and seed producers.
Barley, Wheat
Window 3 - Co-development and Transfer of Technology project
Region: Asia
Target Countries: Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Implementing institution: Academy of Agricultural Sciences (AAS)

Share this page