Critical abiotic factors affecting implementation of technological innovations in rice and wheat production: A review

DOI: 10.18805/ag.v37i4.6457    | Article Id: R-1473 | Page : 268-278
Citation :- Critical abiotic factors affecting implementation of technologicalinnovations in rice and wheat production: A review .Agricultural Reviews.2016.(37):268-278

S. Kumaraswamy*1 and P.K. Shetty2

Address :

Robert Bosch Centre for Cyber Physical Systems, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru-560 012, India.

Submitted Date : 11-09-2014
Accepted Date : 17-09-2016


Rice and wheat are two major staple food crops in India and worldwide. Over the years the yield potential of the crops has been affected by abiotic factors, which is further projected to increase due to climate change induced environmental adversities. Typically these two crops have different growing conditions, rice requiring high water for cultivation unlike wheat which is water demanding and sensitive to larger variability in temperature regimes. In the recent past drought and disease stress, besides several other stresses, are considered to be critical factors affecting the growth and yield of crops, which is evident in the recent decades. Admittedly, drought stress coupled with biotic stress will further contribute for declining performance of crop varieties and difficult to alleviate even with innovative technological innovations. Few of the technological innovations like high yielding varieties, genetically modified cultivars, integrated nutrient management, integrated pest management, water conservation strategies and prophylactic measures to avoid the disease/pest outbreak, though with potential to augment the yield losses is affected by the stresses. Attempts have also been made to utilize transgenic technologies to build intrinsic tolerance mechanisms by the plants through alteration to functional genes. However, sustainable technologies like classical breeding approaches and integrated farming principles are also being considered to develop crops adaptation and/or enhance the adaptive mechanisms by aligning with technological interventions. Though, several technologies show promise but constrained by the limitations to achieve ‘one-fits-all’ model to overcome the interactive effects of abiotic stressors. Visibly, the crop growth and yield enhancement through technological innovations is call of the day as climate change induced aggravation of these stressors on crop production is imminent. Skilful integration of technological innovations to suit the local and regional scale crop husbandry systems may have promise to address the abiotic stress to realize economic yield of crops like rice and wheat. The review will argumentatively analyse few critical stressors that limit the successful implementation of technological innovations to sustain the rice/wheat crop production and resilience building in the millennia.


Abiotic stressors Bi-directional Model Crop production Climate change Growth and yield Rice-Wheat productes Technological innovations.


  1. Anonymous. (2009). 2030: The perfect storm scenario. Population Institute pp. 12.
  2. Antle, J.M. and McGuckin, T. (1993). Technological innovations, agricultural productivity and environmental quality. In: Eds. Carlson, G.A., Zilberman, D., Miranowski, J. Agric. Environ. Resour. Econ., Pp. 175-220.
  3. Baulcombe, D., Crute, I., Davies, B., Dunwell, J., Gale, M., Jones, J., Pretty, J., Sutherland, W. and Toulmin, C. (2009). Reaping the benefits: Science and the sustainable intensification of global agriculture. The Royal Society, London, UK.
  4. Blum, A. (1988). Breeding for stress environments. CRC Press. Boca Raton, USA pp. 245.
  5. Borlaug, N.E. (2007). Sixty-two years of fighting hunger: personal recollections. Euphytica., 157: 287-297.
  6. Bush, V. (1945). Science: The endless frontier. Scientific Research and Development, National Science Foundation, Washington DC.
  7. Cancado, G.M.A. (2009). The Importance of Genetic Diversity to Manage Abiotic Stress. In: Eds. Shanker A, Venkateswarlu, B. Abiotic Stress in Plants - Mechanisms and Adaptations. http://www.intechopen.com/books/abiotic-stress-in-    plants-mechanisms-and-adaptations, 2011
  8. Cassman, K. (1999). Ecological intensification of cereal production systems: Yield potential, soil quality and precision agriculture. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 96:5952-5959.
  9. Chhetri, N., Chaudhary, P., Tiwari, P.R. and Yadav, R.B. (1996). Institutional and technological innovation: Understanding agricultural adaptation to climate change in Nepal. App. Geograp., 201: 1-9.
  10. Conway, G. (1997). The Doubly Green Revolution: food for all in the 21st century. New York (USA): Penguin Books. 335 p.
  11. Dhlamini, Z., Spillane, C., Moss, J.P., Ruane, J. and Urquia, N. (2005). Status of Research and Application of Crop Biotechnologies in Developing Countries. Rome, Italy: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Natural Resources Management and Environment Department.
  12. Eckert, C.G., S. Kalize, M.A. Geber, M.A. Sargent. and E. Elle. 2009. Plant mating systems in a changing world. Trands Ecol. Evol., 25:35-44.
  13. Ellstrand, N.C., Prentice, H.C. and Hancock, J.F. (1999). Gene flow and introgression from domesticated plants into their wild relatives. Ann. Rev. Ecol. Syst., 30:539-563.
  14. Esterling, W.E. (1996). Adapting north American agriculture in climate change in review. Agri. For. Meterol., 80:1-53.
  15. Evenson, R.E. and Gollin, D. (2003). Crop variety improvement and its effect on productivity: The impact of international agricultural research. CABI, Cambridge, MA.
  16. Evenson, R.E. and Gollin. (2003). Assessing the impact of the green revolution, 1960 to 2000. Science 300: 758-762.
  17. Fan, M., Shen, J., Yuan, L., Jiang, R., Chen, X., Davies, W.J. and Zhang, F. (2011). Improving crop productivity and resource use efficiency to ensure food security and environmental quality in China. J. Expt. Bot., 30:1-12.
  18. FAO., How to feed the world in (2050). Food and Agricultural Organization of United Nations, Rome.
  19. Federoff, N.V., Battist, R.N., Beachy, R.N., Cooper, P.J.M., Fishhoff, D.A., Hodges, C.N, Knauf, V.C., Lobell, D., Mazur, B.J., Molden, D., Reynolds, M.P., Ronald, P.C., Rosegrant, M.W., Sanchez, P.A., Vonshank, A. and Zhu, J.K. (2010). Rethinking agriculture for the 21 st century. Science., 327:833.
  20. Fugile, K. (2010). The shifting patterns of agricultural production and productivty worldwide. Eds. Alston, J.M., Babcock, B.A., Pardey, P.G. Midwest Agribusiness Trade Research and Information Center, Iowa State University, Ames, IA.
  21. Gealy, D.R., Mitten, D.H. and Rutger, J.N. (2003). Gene flow between red rice (Oryza sativa) and herbicide resistant rice (Oryza sativa): Implications for weed management. Weed Technol., 17:627-645.
  22. Govindarajulu, M., Pfeffer, P.E., Jin, H., Abubaker, J., Douds, D.D., Allen, J.W., Bucking, H., Lammers, P.J. and Shachar-Hill, Y. (2005). Nitrogen transfer in the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. Nature., 435:819-823.
  23. Gregory, P.J., Johnson, S.N., Newton, A.C. and Ingram, I.S.I. (2009) Integrating pests and pathogens into the climate change/food security debate. J. Exp. Bot., 60: 2827-2838.
  24. Hayami, Y. and Herdt, R.W. (1977). Market effects of technological change on income distribution in semisubsistence agricuture. Am. J. Agric. Econ., 59:245-256.
  25. Hazel, P. (2010). Proven successes in agricultural development. Eds. Spielman, D., Pandya-Lorch, R. International Food Policy Research Institute. Washington DC.
  26. Heisey, P.W., Lantican, M.A. and Dublin, J.J. (2003). Wheat In: Eds. Evenson, R.E., Gollin, D. Crop variety improvement and its effect on productivity: The impact of international agricultural research. CABI, Cambridge, MA. Pp. 47-69.
  27. Hobbs, P.R. and Morris, M. (1996). Meeting South Asia’s future food requirements from rice-wheat cropping systems: Priority issues issues facing researchers in the post green revolution era. NRG paper 96.01, CIMMYT, Mexico pp. 45
  28. Hobbs, P.R., Gupta, R., Ladha, J.K. and Harrington, L. (2000). The rice-wheat consortioum’s example. ILEIA News Letter, pp 8-10.
  29. Hossain, M., Gollin, D., Cabanilla, V., Cabrera, E., Johnson, N., Khush, G.S. and McLaren, G. (2003). International research and genetic improvement in rice: Evidence from Asia and Latin America. In: Eds. Evenson, R.E., Gollin, D. Crop variety improvement and its effect on productivity: The impact of international agricultural research. CABI, Cambridge, MA. Pp. 71-108.
  30. Huffman, W.E. and Evenson, R.E. (2006). Science for agriculture: A long-term perspective. Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA.
  31. IPCC, Climate change and biodiversity, IPCC technical paper V, 2002, pp. 1-86.
  32. Johnson, S.L. and Lincoln, D.E. (2000). Allocation responses in CO2 enrichment and defoliation by a native annual plant Heterothea subaxllaris. Global Change. Biol., 6:767-778.
  33. Jones, H., Lister, D.L., Bower, M.A., Leigh, F.J., Smith, L.M. and Jones, M.K. (2008). Approaches and constraints of using existing landrace and extant plant material to understand agricultural spread in prehistory. Plant Genetic Resourc. Character Utilz., 6:98–112.
  34. Ju, X.T., Xing, G.X., Chen, X.P., Zhang, S.I. and Zhang, L.J. (2009). Reducing environmental risk by improving N management in intensive Chinese agricultural systems. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 106:3041-3046.
  35. Kulkarni, S. (2011). Innovative technologies for water saving in irrigated agriculture. Intl. J. Water Resour. Environ., 1:226-231.
  36. Lake, J.C. and Huges, I. (1999). Nectar production and floral characteristics of Troperolaum majus L. grown in ambiaent and elevated carbon dioxide. Ann. Bot., 84:535-541.
  37. Leung, H. and An, G. (2004). Rice Functional Genomics: Large-Scale Gene Discovery and Applications to Crop Improvement. Adv. Agron., 82:55-111.
  38. Leung, H. (2008). Stressed genomics-bringing relief to rice fields. Curr. Opion. Plant Biol., 201-208. 
  39. Lu, B. and Snow, A.A. (2005). Gene flow from genetically modified rice and its environmental consequences. Biosci., 55:669-678.
  40. Mackill, D.J., Ismail, A.M., Kumar, A. and Gregorio, G.B. (2010). The role of stress-tolerant varieties for adapting to climate change. In: Ed. Wassman, R.Advanced Technologies of Rice Production for Coping with Climate Change: ‘No Regret’ Options for Adaptation and Mitigation and their Potential Uptake. IRRI, Philippines, pp. 31-35
  41. Maillet, F., Poinsot, V., Andre, O., Puech-Pages, V., Haouy, A., Gueunier, M., Cromer, L., Giraudet, D., Formey, D. and Niebel, A. (2011). Fungal lipochitooligosaccharide symbiotic signals in arbuscular mycorrhiza. Nature., 469:58-63.
  42. Meeh, G.A., Stocker, T.F. and Collins, W.D. (2007). Climate change 2007: The physical science basis. Fourth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. 2007, University Press, Cambridge, UK. 
  43. Morton, J. (2007). The impact of climate change on smallholder and subsistence agriculture. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 104:19680-19685.
  44. OECD (2003). Organic agriculture: Sustainability. Markets and policies. CABI, Wallingford, UK.
  45. Ou, S.H. (1985). Rice Diseases. 2nd Edn., Commonwealth Mycological Institute, Kew, Surrey.
  46. Parez-Aleman, P. (2011). Agriculture development and nutrition security special feature: Global and local knowledge building: Upgrading small producers in developing countries. Proc Natl Acad Sci 1000968108-201000968.
  47. Pennisi, E. (2008). The blue revolution, drop by drop, gene by gene. Science., 320:171-173.
  48. Piao, S., Ciais, P., Huang, Y., Shen, Z., Peng, S., Li, J., Zhou, L., Liu, H., Ma, Y. and Ding, Y. (2010). The impacts of climate change on water resources and agriculture in China. Nature., 467:43-51.
  49. Pingali, P. (2012). Green revolution: Impacts, limits and the path ahead. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 10:1-7.
  50. Richards, R.A. (2006). Physiological traits used in the breeding of new cultivars for water-scarce environments. Agri. Water. Manage., 80: 197-211.
  51. Richards, R.A., Watt, M. and Rebetzke, G.J. (2007). Physiological traits and cereal germplasm for sustainable agricultural systems. Euphytica., 154:409-425. 
  52. Rual, J., Venkatesan, K., Hao, T., Hirozane-Kishikawa, T. and Dricot, A. (2005). Towards a proteome-scale map of the human protein-protein interaction network. Nature., 437:1173–1178.
  53. Sadras, V.O. (2002). Interaction between rainfall and nitroogen fertilization of wheat in environments prone to terminal drought: economic and environmental risk analysis. Field Crops Res., 77:201-215.
  54. Sairam, R.K. and Tyagi, A. (2004). Physiology and molecular biology of salinity stress tolerance in plants. Curr. Sci., 86:407-421.
  55. Springer, C.J. and Ward, J.K. (2007). Flowering time and elevated CO2. New Phytol., 176: 243-253.
  56. Sutton, T.J. (2009). Functional genomics and abiotic-stress tolerance in cereals In: Proceedings of the 21st Annual conference of the National Agricultural Biotechnology Council, Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change- NABC, 21: 57-64. Publisher CSIRO, 978-0-64309-595-3 
  57. Swaminathan, M.S. (2005). Towards an ever-green revolution. In: Proceedings of the international congress: In the wake of the double helix: from the green revolution to the gene revolution 27-31, May 2003, Balogna, Italy (Tuberosa, R., Phillips, R.L. and Gale, M. eds.), Avenue Media, Bologna, Italy. Pp. 25-36.
  58. Takebayashi, N. and Morrel. P. (2001). Is self-fertilization a dead end? Revisiting an old hypothesis with genetic theories and a macroevolutionary approach. Am. J. Bot., 88:1143-1150.
  59. Takeda, S. and Matsuoka, M. (2008). Genetic approaches to crop improvement: responding to environmental and population changes. Nature Rev. Genet., 9:444-457.
  60. Tester, M. and Langridge, P. (2010). Breeding technologies to increase crop production in a changing world. Science., 327:818-822.
  61. Trivedi, T.P. (2010). Degraded and Wastelands of India: Status and Spatial Distribution. Directorate of Information and Publications of Agriculture, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, Krishi Anusandhan Bhavan I, Pusa, New Delhi, pp. 167
  62. Vincour, B. and Altman, A. (2005). Recent advances in engineering plant tolerance to abiotic stress: Achievements and limitations. Curr. Opin. Biotech., 16:123-132. 
  63. Ward, F.A. and Velazquez, P. (2008). Water conservation in irrigation can increase water use. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci .USA., 105: 47.
  64. Yano, M. and Tuberosa, R. (2009). Genome studies and molecular genetics-from sequence to crops: Genomics comes of age. Curr. Opin. plant boil., 12:103-106. 
  65. Zhang, J., Natalya, Y., Klueva, Z., Wang, R., David Ho, W.J. and Nguyen, H.T. (2000). Genetic engineering for abiotic stress resistance in crop plants. In: Vitro. Cellular Dev. Biol., 36:108-114.
  66. Ziska, L.H., Gealy, D.R., Tomecek, M.B., Jackson, A.K. and Black, H.L. (2012). Recent and projected increases in atmospheric CO2 concentration can enhance gene flow between wild and genetically altered rice (Oryza sativa). Plos one 7:1-6.

Global Footprints