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The importance of CIMMYT’s maize in Mexico

On September 9, and October 4 and 12, the highland maize program participated in field days in Chapingo, Puebla and Hidalgo. The events illustrated the continuing importance of CIMMYT germplasm in Mexico. For example, in Puebla, with the collaboration of Casiano Tut, from INIFAP, the release of the new hybrid H-3 is in process.

At the Autonomous University of Chapingo, Dr. José de Jesús Reynoso has identified several promising white, yellow, and blue hybrids (known as Toritos). In Hidalgo, at the Polytechnic University, Francisco I. Madero, spoke about work with CIMMYT, and with the collaboration of diverse interdisciplinary groups (state and municipal government, university authorities, producers from near locations, and students of the University). Each group summarized their activities to make known the use of improved maize varieties. On behalf of CIMMYT, José Luis Torres, Senior Researcher, Maize for the Highlands, spoke briefly about CIMMYT’s work worldwide, focusing mainly on Mexico’s highland valleys, and encourage the attending groups to continue to publicize the use of improved maize being developed by CIMMYT.

Many farmers were interested in establishing demonstration plots with CIMMYT materials. In this regard, the Chancelor of the Polythecnic University of Hidalgo, Herminio Baltasar Cisneros, emphasized the commitment of that institution to identify the best maize varieties, and produce low-cost seed for farmers. There was also an exhibition of the different uses of maize, such as maize handcrafts. Among the microbusinesses participating was Semillas Azteca, whose manager, Pedro Cruz, says they are working to release a yellow hybrid for highlands developed at CIMMYT.