Substandard seed to unleash another flour crisis

Wheat crop - The News Today - TNT
ISLAMABAD: Former President ICCI Shahid Rasheed Butt on Thursday said masses will continue to face flour crisis for the third year in a row owing to shortage of quality seed for cultivation in Pakistan.
Increasing wheat support price and fixing targets is not enough to ensure food security and the authorities must do something to provide economical fertilizer, loans, subsidized diesel, quality pesticides and certified seed.
He said that the issues of farmers should be resolved otherwise, masses will not get any relief.
Shahid Rasheed Butt said that country needs at least one million tonnes of seed for the wheat crop but almost half of the quantity is available fanning concerns among the stakeholders.
The state-run departments only hold almost three percent of the seed while the rest of the seed is with the private sector with a major part of it has questionable quality.
He noted that the quality seed available in the country is hardly 20 to 25 percent of the requirement while the rest is substandard which amounts to playing with the future of the country.
The business leader said that rules and regulations in this sector are confusing, vague and not according to the ground realities while the concerned departments lack manpower, will, quality and efficiency while research is almost non-existent in this critical sector on which the whole population of the country depends.
With input from INP
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