ICAR-NRC Banana offers various services to the banana stakeholders across India. The major service is certification of tissue culture planting materials for its quality. We are testing samples from both DBT recognized tissue culture production units (TCPUs) and for non- recognised TCPUs. Virus indexing /testing is being done using different virus detection techniques and genetic fidelity of tissue culture plants tested using ISSR markers. Besides, the centre tests the soil samples of banana growers and offer a recommendation of correct doses to the banana. We are also extending testing services of samples using GC-MS for volatile compounds.
The ICAR-NRCB has developed many products for the benefit of banana growers. Banana Sakthi, a micronutrient mixture is a major product of the centre which contains the most viral micro-nutrients such as Fe, Zinc, Boran, Copper and Manganese in a right proportion. The application of micronutrient boosts the plant vigour and helps to the uptake of major nutrients. Antiserum for banana viruses is also supplied for testing banana plants using immunodetection techniques. The centre has developed biocontrol agents for the management of insect pests, nematodes, wilt and leaf spot diseases.
In banana farming, use of quality planting material plays a significant role in increasing the production and productivity. The centre supply virus free mother cultures of different banana varieties for mass propagation to the TCPUs. Suckers of Hill banana, Udhayam, Red banana, Ney Poovan and many other varieties of commercial importance are being supplied on a cost basis to the needy farmers and industries.