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A number of concurrent SRI evaluations began in 1999-2000 after Chinese researchers learned about SRI 1) from 1999 article by Justin Rabenandrasana (Association Tefy Saina, ATS) in the ILEIA magazine and 2) from seminars by N. Uphoff at China Agricultural University and Nanjing Agricultural University in December 1998 and at IRRI (Los Baños) in March 1999.

  China - (See also complete photo album)

The first SRI trials were undertaken at Nanjing Agricultural University by Dr. Cao Weixing and colleagues there, followed by evaluations at the China National Hybrid Rice Research and Development Center at Sanya under the direction of Prof. Yuan Longping; at the China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI) in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, undertaken by Dr. Zhu Defeng and others; and in Sichuan province by researchers at the Sichuan Academy of Agricultural Science, the Sichuan Agricultural University and other institutions at the suggestion of Prof. Yuan.

In April 2002, the first international SRI conference was held in at Sanya, China, hosted by Prof. Yuan and cosponsored by the China National Hybrid Rice Research and Development Center and the China National Rice Research Institute, together with the Cornell International Institute for Food, Agriculture and Development (CIIFAD) and ATS (see conference proceedings with Chinese reports Ang et al; Tao et al; Wang et al; Yan; Zhu et al). A China National SRI Workshop followed in 2003.

Several variations of SRI have emerged in China over the past decade:

  • In Heilungjiong Province, a Chinese version of SRI had already been developed autonomously in the 1990s by the later Prof. Jin Xueyong at Northeast Agricultural University, called the "3S System" for colder climates.
  • In Sichuan Province, a triangular planting system was developed by Liu Zhibin at the Meishan Hybrid Seed Farm, attaining a yield of 16 t/ha, as reported by Prof. Yuan Long Ping at the Sanya conference.
  • In Jiangsu Province, a wheat-rice rotational farming system --SWRI--, has been developed by the Center for Agroecology and Farming Systems in the China Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS). This system uses mulch with SRI plant management on raised beds to control weeds and conserve soil moisture performs well in both normal years and drought years, but relatively better in the latter. The article reported that in a normal year, SRI methods with mulch would raise farmers' net income from 100 yuan/mu ($220/ha) to 600-800 yuan/mu (>$1,500/ha), whereas in a drought year, income could be raised from a net loss of 200-300 yuan/mu (-$550/ha) to a net profit of 300-500 yuan/much ($880/ha). This has important implications for drought-susceptible areas.
  • In Sichuan Province, a mushroom SRI farming system has been developed alternating these crops efficiently and profitably.
  • According to an article in the Journal of Sichuan Agricultural Science and Technology (2009, 2: 23), an SRI adaptation known as "integrated technologies with paddy land cover" incorporates SRI principles.

By 2010, the SRI area in Sichuan Province had reached over 301,067 ha, starting from 1,133 ha in 2004. SRI methods were being used in 123 of its 130 rice-growing counties during 2010, making it the leading province for SRI utilization. The average SRI yield over the five-year period on this total area has been 9.2 t/ha, representing an average increase of 1.63 t/ha over rice cultivation in the province with current methods.

The 2010 status of SRI in China and Korea was presented at a Workshop on the System of Rice Intensification, Exchanging Experience in China, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Internationally, that was held February 28-March 2, 2010, in Hangzhou, China. While the sections below report on SRI progress primarily in English, much research and reporting on SRI is in Chinese language; what Chinese scientists and practitioners have learned about SRI is very incompletely known outside China. In order to gain a better understanding of the SRI-related research carried out over the past decade in China, SRI-Rice collected research articles in both Chinese and English, translated Chinese abstracts and metadata, and have made these available on our SRI-Rice website (see chronological list and searchable China SRI Zotero database). As of 2013, SRI-Rice had located 140 research articles from 47 research institutions, universities, government agriculture stations, and companies. By May 2014, we had located from 294 research and evaluation articles from 272 of these entities.

On October 31, 2014, Zhoucen Feng presented a review of 313 journal articles on SRI published in 72 journals between 2000 and 2013 at the 4th International Rice Congress (IRC) in Bangkok, Thailand. The primary topics of the articles were planting density, nutrient management, seedling age, and varietal response. A number SRI adaptations, such as the triangular planting patterns for low light-intensity areas, no-till, raised beds with mulch, and duck-rice systems, were described in the presentation. For details, see the item below or Feng and Styger's PowerPoint presentation.

Progress and Activities

2014 Updates

Reports and Articles

Research and Evaluations

National and International SRI Workshops and Meetings in China


PowerPoint Presentations

(Notes: Click here to see all SRI China presentations on Transcripts are at the bottom of each presentation. There is a "full screen" button at the lower right corner of the presentation to enlarge the presentation. If you have trouble viewing the slideshow, make sure you have Flash installed and JavaScript enabled.




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