The Sugarcane Breeding Institute (SBI) in Tamil Nadu has introduced a new variety of sugarcane, which is predicted to offer better results in a shorter time. The new variety, called Co 11015, has been found to have around 2% more sucrose content compared to Co 86032, the variety widely being cultivated at the moment. Apart from a higher yield, the new variety can mature in nine months, unlike the present variety that takes a twelve months.
Co 11015 belongs to one of the 20 clones examined and analysed at nine sugar mills, together by the South India Sugar Mills Association (SISMA) and SBI, and it proved to be the most successful. SBI is thinking of releasing it in the next three months to farmers. The project was launched in 2016 with an aim to improve sugar recovery in the state.
“Two years ago, we planted 20 elite clones of sugarcane in each of the nine mills. We checked their yield, reaction to pests and diseases and sucrose content, to figure out which of the 20 varieties were successful in those respective locations.” said G Hemaprabha, Chief Breeder and Principal Scientist at SBI.
“It also provides 10-15 tonnes more cane per hectare than the existing variety on an average for every harvest,” she said. In a year, this variety registers 20% sucrose content, more than the 18.5% of Co 86032, with an enhancement of about 10%.