The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), based in the Philippines, said scientists at the institute have successfully developed super-salt-tolerant rice varieties , which could help farmers grow rice in coastal areas. Marine is being abandoned due to sea encroachment.
According to IRRI, scientists are in the process of developing a complete variety of rice before it can be grown widely.
The new rice variety has twice the salt tolerance of other rice varieties and is expected to reach farmers in 4 to 5 years.
This salt-tolerant rice variety is crossed between exotic wild rice varieties found in brackish areas with a rice variety developed in the institute (IR56). As a result, 'new varieties of rice can excrete saline from the ground through salt production on leaves.'
Scientists hope this rice variety will help farmers take advantage of abandoned areas of saline soil for cultivation.
Along with wheat and corn, rice is considered one of the three essential foods, providing food for people around the world.
Scientists are still working on creating high yielding rice varieties.