CHANGCHUN, July 6 (Xinhua) -- "Father of hybrid rice" Yuan Longping has said he believes yields from these special strains can be further upped to 1,000 kg per mu in the future.
After agricultural scientists raised the yield of hybrid rice to 926.6 kg per mu (0.0667 hectares) last September, Yuan attended a high-end talent summit on Thursday in Changchun, capital of northeast China's Jilin province, where he told Xinhua, "I believe that raising the yield of hybrid rice to 1,000 kg per mu must be realized. And scientifically, hybrid rice has the potential."
Yuan, an 82-year-old academic from the Chinese Academy of Engineering who developed the world's first breeds of hybrid rice in 1974, also noted that China, the world's most heavily farmed country, faces problems including limited land and water resources, and rising pollution, making food security an ongoing major concern.
"To cope with the food problems, the country must carry out proper land policies, introduce preferential policies for farmers, provide technology support and solve the issue of grain prices," he added.
Yuan started developing hybrid rice in the 1960s. Thanks to his and other researchers' achievements, China's total rice output has increased significantly since then.