Seeds of hope amidst Philippine floods

August 14, 2012

Amidst horrendous flooding around Manila and major rice-growing across Luzon in the Philippines, some good news has emerged for rice farmers – Submarino rice – rice that can survive around 2 weeks of being under water.

is unique because it can grow well in wet conditions where other crops cannot, but if it is covered with water completely it can die, leaving flooded farmers bereft of income.

Submarino rice was bred by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and can survive floods if they occur before flowering. The latest Submarino variety was released in the Philippines in 2009 and disseminated and promoted by the Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) to help rice farmers in times of floods and typhoons.

Philippine Secretary of Agriculture Proceso Alcala said, "IRRI is one of our partner agencies that studies and promotes the propagation of Submarino rice varieties that can recover even after being submerged for 14 days."

Since its release, Submarino rice has been widely adopted by rice farmers across the thanks to efforts by the DA and its agencies, which have been actively promoting Submarino rice to farmers. Their effective strategies have included involving farmers in early field trials and seed multiplication efforts across the country alongside information, education, extension, and communication campaigns and materials.

"By planting Submarino rice, farmers have a fighting chance to outlast most rains and floods that unfortunately beset the country," said IRRI Deputy Director General for Communications and Partnerships Dr. V. Bruce J. Tolentino.

Explore further: 'Rice camp' shows teens the grain is now

Related Stories

Arkansas rice farmers file a lawsuit

August 30, 2006

A group of Arkansas rice farmers has filed a state lawsuit against Bayer CropScience and Riceland Foods Inc., concerning genetically modified rice.

Climate change threatens rice production

October 16, 2009

Once-in-a-lifetime floods in the Philippines, India's delayed monsoon, and extensive drought in Australia are taking their toll on this year's rice crops, demonstrating the vulnerability of rice to extreme weather.

Rice Institute calls for cuts in pesticide use

December 16, 2011

Rice farmers should cut the use of pesticides that kill the natural predators of the planthopper, one of the most destructive pests of the key crop, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has said.

Recommended for you

Scientists overcome key CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing hurdle

December 1, 2015

Researchers at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT have engineered changes to the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing system that significantly cut down on "off-target" ...

Study finds 'rudimentary' empathy in macaques

December 1, 2015

(—A pair of researchers with Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and Université Lyon, in France has conducted a study that has shown that macaques have at least some degree of empathy towards their fellow ...

Which came first—the sponge or the comb jelly?

December 1, 2015

Bristol study reaffirms classical view of early animal evolution. Whether sponges or comb jellies (also known as sea gooseberries) represent the oldest extant animal phylum is of crucial importance to our understanding of ...

Trap-jaw ants exhibit previously unseen jumping behavior

December 1, 2015

A species of trap-jaw ant has been found to exhibit a previously unseen jumping behavior, using its legs rather than its powerful jaws. The discovery makes this species, Odontomachus rixosus, the only species of ant that ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.