An economic analysis of biofortified rice varieties

Rice provides up to 60 per cent of the daily energy requirement. The current popular rice varieties grown in India have an incomplete amino acid profile and limited zinc. The development of high zinc rice varieties by ICAR-Indian Institute of Rice Research and high protein variety by ICAR-National Rice Research Institute is an effort to address malnutrition through biofortification in rice. This study was undertaken to assess the economic performance of zinc biofortified rice varieties and to analyse the technology efficacy of protein biofortification in rice. Information on input-output details, cost of production, yields and output prices and other variables pertaining to DRR Dhan 45 for the kharif season of 2017 were collected through a survey from 150 farmers of Telangana. The results revealed that the economic performance of the zinc biofortifed rice varieties was at par with Samba Mahsuri, a popular variety of the study area. The study also revealed that the technology efficacy of the protein biofortification of rice was in the range of 31 to 39 per cent and 62 to 74 per cent under pessimistic and optimistic scenarios, respectively. Large scale adoption of biofortified rice varieties depend on the availability of seed, certification and premium market price for the biofortified products.