Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia is blessed with 11 drought-resistant rice varieties that have a high level of tolerance to extreme weather, according to the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN).

"Based on the experience in the past 10 years, we can see that there are 11 early-maturing rice varieties that are resistant to drought," Head of BRIN's Center for Food Crop Research, Yudhistira Nugraha, stated in Jakarta on Friday (October 6).

He explained that early-maturing rice varieties refer to those types of rice that can be harvested in less than 105 days. However, other rice varieties can only be harvested when they enter 120 days of age, in general, he pointed out.

Nugraha expressed belief that the shorter period of time required to harvest the 11 rice varieties would help farmers suppress the risks of water limitation-induced crop failures, adding that based on research, the 11 varieties can cut the quantity of water required for planting processes by 20 percent.

He further noted that the 11 drought-resistant varieties are Inpari 38, Inpari 39, Inpari 40, Inpari 41, Cisaat, Cakrabuana, Padjajaran, Situbagendit, Inpago 10, Inpaho 11, and Inpago 12.

Nugraha believes it would be the best decision for farmers to prioritize the planting of the 11 drought-resistant varieties amid the current El Nino-induced prolonged dry season.

"Since the impacts of El Nino are projected to last until February of 2024, we hope that farmers will switch to planting the rice varieties I have mentioned earlier, so they can save water," he remarked, adding that such a measure can help farmers maintain their productivity despite having limited amounts of water.

The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) has warned that the El Nino heat phenomenon poses various threats to Indonesia, such as extreme drought, rises in temperature, land and forest fires, and crop failures.

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Translator: Ahmad M, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Sri Haryati
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