New soybean variety set for release in December


Chitedze Research Station has unveiled plans to release a new soybean variety that will enable farmers realise bumper yield.

The new variety is said to be tolerant to harsh weather conditions.

Chitedze Research Station Legume Specialist, Florence Ngwira said the new seed, TGX1991 22F, is early maturing.


Ngwira made the remarks in an interview on Thursday on the sidelines of the Pan African Soybean Field Day in Kasungu District.

United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded Feed the Future Agricultural Diversification Activity (AgDiv) organised the field day in partnership with Pyxus Agriculture Limited.

Ngwira said the new variety has potential to give a farmer 3.5 tonnes per hectare unlike the current varieties, which only yield about 800 kilogrammes per hectare.


“The variety has also proven to be stable because it is doing well in all the agro-ecological zones we have tested it. It gives the same yield irrespective of the agro-ecological zone it is planted,” she said.

Feed the Future AgDiv deputy Chief of Party, Elizabeth Sibale, said the institution is facilitating fast-tracking of identification of superior varieties for local farming communities.

“For this trial, we started in the 2017/18 growing season; we repeated the trial in winter of June 2018 and then in summer of 2018/19 growing season and this is the fourth. As I am speaking now, we are ready to compile the data for presentation to relevant authorities,” she said.

Pyxus Agriculture Limited Managing Director, Ronald Ngwira, said the firm is excited with outcome of the Pan African Seed trials.

Ngwira said the new varieties have potential to uplift the livelihoods rural farmers who intend to diversify away from tobacco industry whose future looks uncertain.

“So, by getting involved in these trials, getting involved in seed multiplication, we can provide farmers access to better quality seed to get higher yield. Malawi’s soya yield is less than one tonne per hectare. In the United States, it is more than six tonnes,” Ngwira said.

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