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IRAN

Summary

Encouraged by Dr. M. H. Emadi, Deputy Minister for Extension in the Ministry of Agriculture, the Agronomy Group of Haraz Extension and Technology Development Center started SRI trials in 2004 with guidance from CIIFAD's SRI website. During 2005-2008, various experiments with traditional, improved and hybrid varieties were undertaken at the experiment station and in farmers' fields with positive results (see 2006, 2007 and 2008 reports). After the first year, a training program on SRI was established for farmers and governmental rice staff. The 2008 report notes that, in addition to reducing water use by 2/3, SRI practices "increase rice yield about 60% due to higher tiller number and panicle number, increasing numbers of grains per panicle, percentage of ripened grains, root and plant health, resistance to lodging, and tolerance to pest damage." H. Aghagolzadeh also designed the first rotary weeders in Iran for use with SRI in 2008. A 2012 research article by Amiri Larijani and Hoseini indicated that, while combined chemical and organic fertilizers gave the best growth and yields under SRI management, organic inputs can replace chemical fertilizer for local varieties without reducing yield. A 2013 report on SRI trials in a World Bank-funded Participatory Technology Development (PTD) project in Mazandaran province confirmed best results were achieved with fewer seedlings, shallow planting and intermittent irrigation. In a presentation at Cornell University during June 2016, Dr. M. H. Emadi summarized some of the major results of SRI research in Iran as: yield increases of about 60%; decrease in cost of production up to 40%; and decrease in water consumption up to 30%.

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