In Madagascar the field season has progressed to the point where many of our rice material in the field are now flowering. I visited 4 field sites to evaluate the performance of our material, to make adjustments in the experimental protocol and to start making selections among the breeding lines in the uplands and lowlands. We furthermore set up a greenhouse to make crosses between some of the breeding lines and made arrangements to have our new molecular lab becoming functional by installing lab benches, sinks, machinery etc. At the University of Antananarivo I was teaching a 2-day course on Plant Breeding to about 25 students and young scientists.
Between JIRCAS and CIRAD/France we are in the process of developing joint research activities in the fields of plant breeding/genetics, ecophysiology and agronomy. My visit to CIRAD facilitated this process as I was able to meet all potential collaborators. I explained our research activities in Madagascar and elsewhere and explored possible concrete steps in linking our respective research activities.