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Our Impact

Increasing food security

Food security is no longer just about abundance of supply. In its truest sense, food security is only achieved when rice growing countries are also producing nutritious and high-quality rice to satisfy the rise in demand and nutritional needs of rice-consuming populations. 

IRRI works closely with research networks, governments, and farmer communities to ensure that our approach to developing an abudant supply of healthier rice varieties are tailored such that it reaps the best returns for everyone involved. 

This is what food security is all about. Learn more about IRRI’s success stories on increasing food security.

Stewards of a Healthier Planet

How do we feed the world without destroying it?

We do more, with less. 

By influencing the people we work with to deploy smart crop management practices that optimize inputs like fertilizer, water, and other equally important resouces in farm management, we significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions from rice fields.

Farmers tell their stories: Direct seeding of rice using a drumseeder in Indonesia

Find out how else are we trying to put this into action.

Engaging Women

IRRI acknowledges that increased participation of women in agricultural research for development and extension will accelerate the realization of development goals, such as reducing poverty and increasing food security. IRRI is working with women to empower them and strengthen their role in the design, experimentation, and evaluation of agricultural research for development, as well as improved access to resources and control over output.

 

Tackling climate change

Over the years, a wide range of institutions, including IRRI, have embarked in diverse climate change initiatives and projects that deal with adaptation and mitigation in the rice production system. The Institute has defined a coherent research portfolio on rice and climate change emphasizing on three areas: adaptation, mitigation, and policy. This sets rice production into the broader context of food supply and food security alongside socioeconomic issues, such as rural development and gender mainstreaming.

Reducing poverty

Reducing poverty is one of IRRI’s primary goals. Through the coordinated efforts of IRRI and our more than 900 partners worldwide, we have made headway toward achieving this seemingly insurmountable objective.

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), for instance, reported that IRRI’s work resulted in rice yields of up to 13% between 1985 and 2009 across three Southeast Asian countries.

Meanwhile, the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) reported that the US$12 million investment in rice research by the Swiss government has yielded $70 million in benefits to rice farmers and national economies in four Asian countries.

Making rice healthier

Many people in Asia rely heavily on rice for most or their entire calorie needs because they cannot afford or do not have access to a full range of nutritious food such as fruits, vegetables, and foods from animal sources (e.g., meat, dairy products, and eggs). As a result, lack of iron, zinc, and vitamin A has become prevalent micronutrient deficiencies in rice-consuming countries. The cost of these deficiencies in terms of lives and quality of life lost is enormous, and women and children are most at risk.

Healthier rice varieties have the potential to reach many people because rice is already widely grown and eaten. IRRI is developing rice varieties that have more iron, zinc, and beta carotene content to help people get more of these important micronutrients. These healthier rice varieties can complement current strategies to reduce micronutrient deficiencies.