The Shakarganj Sugar Research Institute (SSRI) was established in 1983. Shakarganj’s decision to setup the research institute was based mainly on the following facts:
- The meagre financial resources of the country demand the involvement of industry in agriculture research; on the other hand, not much emphasis has been given on sugarcane research in government research organisations.
- Development of new cane varieties with best management practices can lead to increased crop productivity.
- The success stories of private sector R & D in advance countries have revolutionised the agriculture, milling and processing of the sugar world.
A scientist of international repute, Dr Sardar Ahmad Qureshi (Late), was appointed as the first director general of the institute. He worked for 15 years with the institute till his death in 1998. Dr. Qureshi’s hard work, his passion and dedication to research work paved the way for converting the R&D programmes into a reality.
- Sugarcane breeding to evolve high yielding, early maturing varieties having tolerance against biotic and abiotic stresses.
- To investigate the agronomic problem of sugarcane production.
- Research and development on utilization of biomass from sugar industry effluents and its use for sustainable agriculture.
- To study soils in sugarcane producing areas and to relate these to crop management.
- Development of genetic engineering and tissue culture techniques for establishment of elite clones.
- To study and monitor the pests and diseases of sugarcane as appropriate control measures.
- To conduct research on germination of sugarcane setts, sucrose production, translocation, storage and environmental influences on these processes.
- To advice on the use of fertilizers and other agricultural chemicals, irrigation and drainage, diseases and pests control, the use of machines, equipment land and water management, and other aspects of crop planting, production and management.
- To publish and disseminate information on all aspects of sugarcane production.
- To conduct educational courses in various aspects of sugarcane growing for cane development staff and growers.
- To collaborate and exchange information and material with Research Organizations in Pakistan and abroad.
- To improve technology of sugarcane production inside the sugar factories by improving process and milling efficiency.