Australian, Vietnamese experts develop new rice variety to tackle climate change

SunRice, Australia’s largest rice supplier, will partner with Australian and Vietnamese researchers to develop a new variety of rice that helps farmers in the Mekong Delta adapt to climate change and offers a fresh opportunity to increase exports from the region.
Australian, Vietnamese experts develop new rice variety to tackle climate change ảnh 1 A rice field in Mekong Delta (Photo: VNA)

According to an announcement posted on The Australian Financial Review (AFR), the Australian government's researchers and SunRice will work with the government scientists and growers of Vietnam, with the goal to help farmers grow higher-value crops amid subsidence, fresh-water shortages and the salinity challenges of climate change, and open up new markets for Vietnam’s rice bowl.

The AUD5 million, four-year research project will build on work by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR). Along with local growers and provincial governments, the project will involve the University of Queensland, An Giang University, Can Tho University and Cuu Long Rice Research Institute.

SunRice chief executive Rob Gordon said the project brought together the “best research, government and rice industry minds” from Vietnam and Australia, all determined to improve the Delta’s rice value chain.

Assistant Trade Minister Tim Ayres said the project, funded by investment totaling AUD2.4 million from SunRice and AUD2.6 million in cash from the ACIAR, will benefit rice growers across the Delta as well as Australian agriculture.