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Wheat Productivity Enhancement Program

The Wheat Productivity Enhancement Program aims to enhance and protect the productivity of wheat in Pakistan by supporting research that leads to the identification, adoption, and optimal agronomic management of new, high yielding, disease-resistant wheat varieties. The main goal of the project is to facilitate efforts of scientific institutions in Pakistan to minimize adverse effects of wheat rusts — including the highly virulent Ug99 stem rust disease — through surveillance and genetically resistant varieties.

As part of the U.S. government’s assistance to Pakistan, the U.S. Development Agency (USDA) and Pakistan’s Ministry of Agriculture have identified the development of wheat varieties with resistance to virulent rust strains as a goal for improving food security and related agricultural production challenges. This document outlines a project for providing cereal rust protection for wheat production in Pakistan.

This wheat production enhancement project is a multi-partner, collaborative research and development program that includes human resource development. The primary external partners — USDA, CIMMYT, and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas — work cooperatively with Pakistan research organizations to refine work plans and implement research and development activities in rust surveillance, pre-breeding, breeding, seed, and agronomy as described in objectives section.

  • Testing soil with scientists
  • Planting seeds
  • Wheat sheller demonstration
  • Scientists in wheat field
  • Machinery training
  • Comparing seeds

Funding Institutions

  • International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas

  • United States Development Agency

Principal coordinator

Muhammad Imtiaz

project website



Rust pathogen surveillance

Pre-breeding to enhance the diversity and utility of rust resistant wheat breeding parent

Accelerated breeding to develop and test rust resistant, high performance candidate wheat varieties

Seed multiplication and distribution

Agronomic management practices