Progress of Soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merrill] Breeding and Genetics Research in Ethiopia: A Review

Mesfin Hailemariam


Ethiopia the second largest population in Africa and is one of the five fastest growing economies in the world. The global population is expected to increase by roughly 20% in the next 20 years. Agro-industries in Ethiopia like Jimma, Hawasa ,Mekele, Kombolcha and the like needs providing tax exemptions for oil processing plants to use the close destination opportunity to the European markets for contributing for foreign currency reserve.Since there is huge potential for soybean production in the country, mechanized soybean farming should be introduced;machines should extensively use in sowing and harvesting so that that the yield of soybean has been improved.Model cultural techniques are studied and practiced in various soybean so that varieties should   used according to recommendation. This implies an incomplete value‑chain development. Availability of sufficient genetic variability has been the major limitations of soybean breeding in the country. To overcome the problem introduction of germplasms from various sources and > 1000 germplasm has been introduced in the last 4 years. In addition, there has been considerable effort to improve the local capacity to enhance the genetic variability through hybridization and selecting recombinant inbred lines (RILs) from the segregating populations. Consequently, crossing and evaluation of segregating populations (F2‑F4) are being done every year. Modified single seed descent was identified as the best procedure to evaluate segregating populations and select transgressive segregants. The first 200 RILs were developed by Jimma Agricultural Research Centre and evaluated at different stages of variety trials and some of these materials are in the national and Pre-national variety trials. Generally, strategies’ that enhance the productive potentials of the crops that make the crop attractive choice of smallholder farmers for production, large scale plantation and agro- industries needs to be designed to help farmers exploit the multiple benefits of the crop.  Thus, the objectives of this review paper are to discuss the genetic resources of with the examples taken from the Ethiopian context.

Keywords: Ago-industry, Cost cutting technology, mal-nutrition, RILs, transgressive sergeants

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3186 ISSN (Online)2225-0921

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