New UPLB corn variety named after DA Secretary

In simple rites held at the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB), UP Los Baños yesterday June 10, Dr. Artemio Salazar, together with UPLB officials led by Chancellor Luis Rey I. Velasco presented the new YAP (Yield and Protein) corn variety to the Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Arthur C. Yap, whom the corn was named after.

“YAP corn is a high yield – high protein variety that is too good to be true but true,” says Dr. Artemio M. Salazar, principal breeder of the YAP corn and Deputy Director of the College of Agriculture-Crop Science Cluster.

Dr. Salazar further related that the open-pollinated corn variety has highly acceptable grits quality for food, high quality protein maize and has more lysine than normal corn. Lysine is important for proper growth, and it plays an essential role in the production of carnitine, a nutrient responsible for converting fatty acids into energy and helping to lower cholesterol. Lysine cannot be produced by the body so it must be obtained from food.

In response to the ceremonial presentation, Secretary Yap said that he is honored to have the promising variety named after him. He said that the University contributed a great deal in agriculture and even appealed to UPLB constituents to remain as a DA partner in the latter’s quest to advance the agriculture industry.

He explained further that challenges in Philippine Agriculture remained the same in spite of the technological advances that have occurred through the years. He also expressed his concern over the adverse effects of climate change to agriculture. As a partner, Yap encouraged UPLB to propose projects that will address climate change.

“DA is willing to fund projects that may need a large budget but has a great multiplier effect than small researches that promise small contributions,” he says.

Yap added that the real problem of the agriculture industry is not lack of technologies but how to bridge the gap between generation of technologies and adaptation of farmers.

The launching also highlighted presentations of different technology breakthroughs of the University. The presentations aim to give Secretary Yap an account of technologies UPLB have generated that can improve largely the agriculture industry of the country. (By Jo Ann A. Oruga, Office of Public Relations, UPLB)

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