Pakistani Partnerships to Combat Cotton Disease and Increase Agricultural Productivity
Event Date: Nov 17, 2020
Time: 09:00 AM to 10:00 AM (GMT -5)
Location: United States
Online: Online Event
Host: Please contact [email protected] to sign up for this event.
Cotton is one of Pakistan’s most important crops, yet by the mid-1990s, the prevalence of the cotton leaf curl virus (CLCuV) had limited production. Because USDA lists CLCuV as a top threat to U.S. cotton production, the Cotton Productivity Enhancement Project (CPEP) benefits both the U.S. and Pakistan. Plus, U.S. cotton growers export long-staple cotton to Pakistan and other countries, where it is blended with local varieties for textile production.
CPEP was developed in 2010 as a U.S. and Pakistani Government response to this threat. USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service and Agricultural Research Service, along with USAID, the National Agricultural Research Center, and the Pakistan Agricultural Research Center, and ICARDA have worked closely with Pakistani farmers and industry to combat the virus, build a stronger U.S.-Pakistani relationship, and increase our trade.
Learn how CPEP first developed a laboratory diagnostic test to identify the virus and track its spread. Then as the project evolved, USDA added farmer field schools to teach smallholder cotton farmers, especially women and children, methods to mitigate the effects of the virus as well best agricultural management practices to improve their productivity and help them work safely. Now Pakistani farmers are using these methods and Pakistani breeders have just received government approval for commercialization of virus resistant cotton seed for the farmers. The CPEP cooperation with Pakistani scientists is now saving the United States at least five years of research and development as U.S. breeders develop their own disease resistant varieties. For this reason, companies, such as Bayer Crop Science and BASF, as well as farmer supported organizations including the National Cotton Council and Cotton Incorporated, have also supported this project.
Dr. Jodi Scheffler, CPEP Principal Investigator and Plant Geneticist with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service has compiled an impressive record in applied genetic research while based at the Jamie Whitten Delta States Research... more Center in Stoneville, Mississippi. She uses the large U.S. cotton germplasm collection to find cotton with the naturally occurring traits needed to enhance the cotton plant’s self-protection mechanisms (host plant resistance) and protect cotton against nematodes, insects and diseases. Working with Pakistani partners, she identified resistance to CLCuV and developed resistant cotton varieties. Dr. Scheffler has also used the cotton germplasm collection to identify and transfer into cotton lines, traits that expand the uses for cotton seed, a high protein underutilized by-product that can now be more fully used for animal feed and provide another source of income for the farmer. In her career, she has developed risk assessment procedures for assessment of GMOs released into the environment and helped decrease the time it takes to develop new cotton varieties by identifying DNA markers for marker assisted selection. Dr. Scheffler is the recipient of the 2014 Cotton Genetics Research Award and of the 2016 USDA Abraham Lincoln Award. less
Eric Brownstein, USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, is the CPEP program manager. Based out of Washington, DC, Eric works on agricultural development and regulatory alignment projects across Pakistan, Ukraine, Georgia, and... more Afghanistan. less