This program contributes to the sustainable intensification of field crops production, improving resilience to climate change and reducing environmental impacts. The program delivers strategic support to farmers and their associations, private companies and public research institutions through partnerships.
We generate know-how and promote the adoption of improved inputs and sustainable agronomical practices for traditional crops and the introduction of new species to increase crop diversity in the landscape (including winter and summer cereals, legumes and silage crops). The program also tests unusual crops in different areas in order to assess their adaptation and offer potential new areas of production to farmers (e.g. hop and saffron). We also improve the adaptation, yield and quality of new cereal varieties through breeding. The research efforts of the program target four major research lines: resilience of crop systems to Climate Change; Plant Health; Smart Agri-Food Systems; Increase Plant Protein Production.
Last-generation technologies are applied to identify resilience to climate change and resistance to diseases and pests combining crop intrinsic traits and the sustainable application of inputs: fertilizers, pesticides and water to improve yields, enhance soil quality and reducing environmental impacts including greenhouse gas mitigation.
We search for novel genetic diversity in traditional, old (landraces) and modern varieties for responses to different stresses and identify associated DNA markers to be incorporated in breeding programs, thus ensuring genetic yield progress of new cultivars and a reliable response to environmental and biological threats. Our activities contribute to modernize and digitize the field crops chain, from breeding programs to agronomic practices and to accelerate the transfer of technologies and genetic gains to farmers, with the final goal of enhancing the resilience to climate change and the sustainability towards healthier, more nutritious and productive field crops for the society.
- Head: Marta Da Silva
- Researchers: 6
- Support staff: 11
- Work centres: IRTA Lleida Agronomists, Ebre Field Station, and Mas Badia.
Relevant scientific publications:
Roselló, M., Villegas, D., Álvaro, F., Soriano, J., Lopes, M., Nazco, R., & Royo, C. (2019). Unravelling the relationship between adaptation pattern and yield formation strategies in Mediterranean durum wheat landraces. European Journal Of Agronomy, 107, 43-52. doi:10.1016/j.eja.2019.04.003 http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12327/588
Liu, C., Khodaee, M., Lopes, M., Sansaloni, C., Dreisigacker, S., Sukumaran, S., & Reynolds, M. (2019). Multi-environment QTL analysis using an updated genetic map of a widely distributed Seri × Babax spring wheat population. Molecular Breeding, 39(9). doi:10.1007/s11032-019-1040-1