To ensure genetic improvement and develop high yielding, early maturing
pest and disease resistant varieties of CRIN mandate crops.
The crop improvement Department of CRIN is composed if two sections: plant breeding and biotechnology. The primary goal of the Department is to ensure genetic improvement and develop high yielding, early maturing, pest and disease resistant varieties of CRIN mandate crops. The plant breeding section of the Department is focused at the genetic, conservation and improvement of our mandate crops: cocoa, cashew, coffee, kola and Tea with the aim of developing improved varieties of these crops for cultivation in Nigeria. Plant biotechnology section is made up of two units which are molecular biology and tissue culture. This section is focused at using biotechnology techniques to aid our research activities in achieving the goal of the Departments.
i. Cocoa plantlets have been successfully regenerated from the floral part (staminode) of cocoa.
ii. Somatic embryos of cocoa have been developed from staminode explants to tea and cocoa using locally sourced growth enhancement substitutes like lagoon water, trona and earthworm casts.
iii. Genetic transformation of staminode explants of cocoa was achieved using Agrobacterium tumefasciens. All the aforesaid achievements provide foundation for increased agricultural and industrial production if they are taken up by entrepreneurs in agriculture and manufacturing sector, leading to increased employment, arrest of rural-urban drift of manpower, increased availability of agro-industrial raw materials, elimination of poverty, increased foreign exchange earnings and enhancement of prosperity among all Nigerians.