7) ICRISAT's Agri-Business Incubator selected as best technology incubator for 2005

The Government of India has selected the Agri-Business Incubator (ABI) at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) for the National Award for the Best Technology Incubator 2005.

Dr HK Mittal, Advisor and Head of the National Science and Technology Entrepreneurial Development Board (NSTEDB), Ministry of Science and Technology, informed this in a communication to the Director General of ICRISAT, Dr William Dar, on 24 March. The formal announcement will be made at the function on 11 May.

The ABI has been selected for the award in recognition of the “excellent work done in promoting technology-based ventures in the agri-biotechnology sector.”

According to Dr William Dar, the selection of ABI at ICRISAT for the Best Technology Award is a testimonial to the institute's success in attracting public-private sector partnerships for developing agricultural technologies into successful agri-business ventures. “It has been proved that a strong and dynamic agri-business substantially contributes to growth in agricultural production and employment,” Dr Dar said.

The ABI has been established with financial support from NSTEDB. Through the ABI, the institute is promoting several technologies ranging from farm-based to advanced biotechnologies.

The agri-business products and technologies incubated through ABI are: sweet sorghum for ethanol production; Helicoverpa -resistant transgenic cotton; biofermenter for biopesticide production; drought-resistant groundnut variety ICGV 91114; better-yielding chickpea varieties JG-11 and KAK-2; biopesticide formulations for controlling crop pest; pesticide-free crops and produce through organic farming.

The enterprise partners of ABI include Rusni Distilleries; Bioseed Research India; Seed Works India; Slesser and Tom Electronics; Hyglass and Chemicals; Aakrruthi Agricultural Associates of India; Mekins Biotech; and G-Tech Seeds Exports.

For further information, contact Dr Kiran Sharma at k(dot)Sharma(at)cgiar(dot)org.

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