Participatory varietal selection of rice

Participatory varietal selection (PVS) of rice is a simple way for breeders, agronomists, and extension staff to learn which varieties will be adapted better and faster under farmers’ conditions.

Usually, conventional breeding programs test varieties in research stations, which do not represent farmers’ fields. Furthermore, farmers are often consulted only at the end of the process, when newly released varieties are evaluated in on-farm demonstration trials. Also, varietal release systems prioritize grain yield, while farmers often look for other traits when choosing varieties.

With PVS, farmers are involved in the selection process from planning to final selection stage.

Farmers in Myanmar were encouraged to join PVS trials to introduce high-yielding varieties for the favorable areas and stress-tolerant varieties for the salt- and flood-prone areas. These initiatives were part of the Livelihood and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT) Project funded by the United Nations Office for Project Services, and the MyRice Project of the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research.

Click here to watch a video on the PVS process and experiences of farmers in Myanmar.

Key scientists:

Varietal improvement: RK Singh (

Agronomy: Romeo Labios (

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