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Sorghum in the Eighties Proceedings of the International Symposium on Sorghum Volume 1

By L R House, L K Mughogho and J M Peacock

Abstract

In October 1971 in Hyderabad. India an international symposium on sorghum was held which examined and reviewed the then scientific, production, and nutritional knowledge of sorghum as a crop and as a human food.\ud Almost exactly 10 years later, ICRISAT hosted Sorghum in the Eighties—an international symposium sponsored by USAID Title XII Collaborative Research Support Program on Sorghum and Pearl Millet (INTSORMIL); the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR); and the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT).\ud It was felt by the organizers that because so much knowledge and information had been attained in the intervening 10 years, scientists should meet again. Consequently, 245 scientists from 37 countries attended the Symposium from 2\ud to 7 November 1981 at ICRISAT Center near Hyderabad. They examined and evaluated the achievements made in the last decade, discussed the current problems, and made recommendations for future research and other activities.\ud The participants showed a critical awareness of sorghum's role as an important cereal for food, feed, construction material, and fuel in the developed and the developing countries. On a world production and utilization basis, sorghum ranks fifth after wheat, rice, maize and barley. About 90% of the total production and 90% of the harvested area are located in 12 countries in Asia, the Americas,\ud Africa, and Oceania. \ud Sorghum is one of the main staple food grains of the world's poorest people, particularly in the semi-arid tropics (SAT). Over 55% of world sorghum production is in the SAT. Of the total SAT production, Asia and Africa contribute about 65%,\ud of which 34% is harvested in India. Matters of considerable concern are that sorghum production is growing more slowly than population and that the food situation in parts of Africa is rapidly deteriorating. \ud Situations such as these clearly indicate that more socioeconomic factors will need to be taken into account to guide and influence the direction of future scientific research on sorghum. The deliberations and discussions during the Symposium on factors related to sorghum and its environment, including climate, insects, fungi, and birds; the genetic resources; breeding for improvement; production technology; food quality and utilization; and the socioeconomic issues showed that many studies will still have to be made to further unravel the potentialities of this cereal. Sharp notice has been taken of research fields where there has been little progress in the last 10 years.\ud A main value of the Symposium has been to determine work priorities for ICRISAT and the national programs in the SAT, and to emphasize the need for continued cooperation with other institutions. Sorghum in the Eighties has been a rewarding Symposium which has not lost sight of the basic objective to increase the yield and production of better sorghum to feed people

Topics: Sorghum
Publisher: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Year: 1982
OAI identifier: oai:oar.icrisat.org:774

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Citations

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