BISA farms became functional in the very first year of their acquisition, and research work was initiated with limited staff. Simultaneously the development of the farms was continued. The major accomplishments of BISA during the last three years are as follows:
Theme 1 Rapid genetic gain through genomic selection to facilitate the national breeding program
Increased sharing of wheat genetic resources: More than 1,500 new improved genotypes are introduced every year from CIMMYT, Mexico through BISA for large plot multilocation trials, an increase of nearly three times as compared to the period before the establishment of BISA. Several thousands of seed packets are also distributed each year to national partners and collaborators for testing and using the promising inputs in breeding programs.
Theme 2: Climate-resilient practices for food and nutritional security
BISA has been using the latest research tools and techniques for breeding stress-tolerant crop varieties, precision-conservation agriculture, and small farm mechanization. BISA has developed and promoted innovative agricultural production technologies for smallholders in South Asia.
The introduction and promotion of improved varieties and conservation agricultural practices by BISA have demonstrated direct links to elevate food security, environmental outcomes, and economic opportunities. BISA farms are the best examples of largescale demonstration of in-situ management of rice residue demonstrating ‘No Burning’
through appropriate use of Super SMS fitted combine harvesters and Happy Seeders.
Theme 3: Regional research and innovation platform for capacity
BISA provides South Asian agricultural students and scientists an efficient and effective platform to develop their capacities in diversified research fields of mutual interest.
During the last five years, numerous Ph.D. and MS students have completed research work from BISA.
Regular trainings are organized for students, scientists, and farmers in India on aspects ranging from breeding techniques to crop insurance, from state-of-the-art knowledge and exposure to emerging climate-resilient technologies.
Theme 4: Research for policies
To facilitate science-based, effective, and climate-resilient policies in South Asia, BISA has been undertaking related research activities on its farms as well as in farmers’ plots.
Evidence generated from the Climate-Smart Village approach in Nepal and India has led to the integration of these lessons in the country’s national and sub-national agricultural adaptation and development plans.
Nepal government and the World Food Programme are using a flexible cropforecasting platform, ‘CCAFS Regional Agricultural Forecasting Toolbox’ (CRAFT) for
real-time monitoring and assessment of the impacts of climatic risks on its food
Theme 5: Develop and extend BISA’s expertise to new horizons / geographies in South Asia
BISA was started in India in collaboration with ICAR and has three research farms in three states with different agro-ecologies. With the growing demand for services from BISA by national agricultural systems, there is an urgent need to develop state-of-the-art genotyping and phenotyping infrastructure at BISA farms. It is imperative to make modern genotyping and phenotyping facilities available to interested research organizations and assist national
research programs in South Asian Countries.
BISA envisages to attract South Asian/ BIMSTEC/SAARC member countries, NARSs, National Research Institutes, Private Sector, Civil Society Organizations, and NGOs as active partners for expanding BISA’s outreach in South Asia. Along these lines, BISA has done extensive work in Nepal and Bangladesh and has also extended its services to Bhutan and Sri Lanka.