From seed to market, the good agricultural practices (GAP) website is designed to provide extension officers and agricultural development workers with practical solutions to help irrigated rice farmers boost yields, and improve grain quality and production efficiency. Developed by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), key targets of the site include increasing rice yields, alleviating poverty and creating healthy rice-growing ecosystems by helping farmers to reduce pesticides, fertilisers and water use.
In order to meet global demand and keep rice affordable for the poor, IRRI predicts that an additional 8-10 million tons of rice are needed every year for the next 20 years. "Adopting the efficient and effective farming practices promoted on the GAP site will go a long way to help lift farmers and their communities out of poverty and hardship, and ensure they have enough rice to eat," says Dr. Grant Singleton, scientist at IRRI. The website brings together decades of research on the best management practices for irrigated rice, including information on land preparation, water management, crop health, storage and marketing.