World Journal of Agricultural Research. 2014, 2(5), 216-222DOI:
Abstract: Grain legumes play an important role in Nepalese agriculture contributing towards food and nutritional security, nitrogen economy, crop intensification, diversification and sustainable farming systems and rank fourth in terms of area and fifth in agricultural production. Grain Legumes Research program (GLRP) of Nepal in collaboration with CGIAR centers works for genetic improvement of lentil, chickpea, pigeonpea, soybean, mungbean, blackgram, and cowpea, resulting in development of 35 improved varieties and a dozen of production technologies for different agro-ecological domains. This has led to substantial increase (142%) in grain legumes production, mainly because of 47% area increase and 65% yield increase during the last two and a half decades. The current estimates for area, production and productivity of grain legumes in Nepal are 334,323 ha, 319,770 metric tons and 956 kg ha-1, respectively. Lentil is the major grain legume and accounts for 62% of area and 65% production of total grain legumes in Nepal and has emerged as an important export commodity. A number of micro-nutrient rich (iron, zinc and selenium) lentil lines have been identified in collaboration with ICARDA and scaled out under the Harvest Plus Challenge Program. Further efforts are underway for expanding area under lentil, chickpea, fieldpea, and lathyrus in rice-fallow through Village based seed enterprise under OFID/ICARDA program. There is further scope for increase in area, production and productivity of grain legumes in Nepal through development and popularization of suitable varieties and technologies, streamlining community based seed production system, addressing climate change issues and policy reforms for the promotion of legumes.