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Sweet Potato Research Institute (SPRI)

Sweet Potato Research Institute (SPRI) of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), was established in 2002. Its predecessor is Tuber Crops Research Institute. It is also named Xuzhou Agricultural Sciences Research Institute of Jiangsu Xu Huaihe District, Jiangsu Xuzhou Sweet Potato Research Center, Xuzhou Agricultural Academy of Sciences, all that are affiliated with Jiangsu Agricultural Academy of Sciences and Xuzhou municipal government.

The institute is composed of 5 administration departments, 11 research divisions and 3 technology enterprises.

5 Administration Departments are:
• Administrative Office
• Department of Scientific Research Management
• Department of Finance
• Department of Logistics Service
• Department of Base Management

11 Research Divisions are:
•  Division of sweet potato variety and resource;
•  Division of sweet potato inherit and breeding;
•  Division of sweet potato cultivation;
•  Division of sweet potato disease and pest prevention and control;
•  Division of sweet potato processing and utilization;
•  Division of wheat breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of rice breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of cotton breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of soybean breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of peanut breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of vegetable breeding and cultivation;
•  Division of plant protection, etc.

3 technology enterprises are:
•  Jiangsu Xu Nong seed industry science and technology co., Ltd 
•  Science and Technology Development Center of Xu Zhou Agricultural Academy of Sciences
•  Jiangsu Native Food co., Ltd

19 platforms are built in the institute, several are listed as follows:
•  National research and development center for sweet potato
•  National Sweet potato Improvement Center
•  National research center for wheat, rice, cotton, soybean, peanut industrialized agriculture system in Xuhuai station;
•  Key Laboratory for Biology and Genetic Breeding of Sweet Potato of MOA;
•  National Germplasm Xuzhou test-tube plantlet Storage;
•  Ministry of Agriculture key open country science observation site;
•  Key and Open Laboratory of genetic improvement for Sweetpotato of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences;
•  National Sweetpotato Introduction, Demonstration and Extension Base of Foreign Intelligence;
•  Jiangsu Province Sweetpotato Germplasm Gene Bank Construction;
•  Post-Doctoral research center, etc.

The institute has been awarded as one of top 100 agricultural scientific research units for 4 consecutive times by the Ministry of Agriculture, among the highest in agricultural scientific research institution of the same kind. More than 180 new crop varieties were successively bred and has been popularized for 2.5 billion mu in more than 20 provinces, cities, autonomous regions. The Institute has won more than 250 achievement awards at various levels, including 26 national awards (including 3 National Technology Invention Awards) and 126 provincial and ministerial awards. The Institute has been authorized 12 national invention patents and 8 utility model patents.

Now the institute has 353 staff members (with 200 staff members retire and retiree formerly), 153 engaged, including 111 scientists and technicians, among the scientific workers, there are 17 research professors, 39 associate research professors, 10 doctors and 41 masters, 24 incorporated into “333” Talent Project of Jiangsu Province, 22 special experts of government, 12 outstanding experts of state and province.

The institute has more than 1500 acres high standard of agricultural scientific research field, 9 laboratories of all kinds, more than 1000 pieces (sets) advanced scientific instruments and equipment domestic and foreign, a near billion yuan in fixed assets.

Since the Tenth Five-Year-Plan, the institute has been undertaking over 100 national, ministerial and provincial, municipal scientific research projects and international cooperation projects.

Since the sixth five-year plan, entrusted by the ministry of agriculture, ministry of science and technology, the researchers in the institute have been responsible for the organization and coordination work of scientific research of sweet potato throughout the country, they have been undertaking and participated in many important projects, including national key scientific and technological projects between the sixth and the ninth five-year plan, the national high-tech R&D program (863 project) in the tenth-five-plan, the Ministry of Agriculture “948” project, state science and technology support program, the Special Scientific Research Fund, the eleventh and the twelfth five-year-plan national research industrialized agriculture system, the national high-tech R&D program (863 project) in the twelfth five-year-plan.

For sweet potato research, the main fields are: basic research and applied technology research on germplasms innovation and utilization, new varieties breeding and biotechnology aided improvement, efficient cultivation and physiological mechanism, plant diseases and insect pests prevention and control mechanism and technology, postpartum processing and utilization, etc.

In sweet potato research field, we have won 33 awards for achievement, including 5 national awards, 18 ministerial and provincial awards. More than 400 papers have been published.

Among them,” Xushu 18”, the excellent and world-famous sweet potato variety has always been the main variety in sweet potato domestic production since 1982, and was awarded the first prize for National Invention.

“Analyse of sweet potato main parents and utilization” promoted the improvement of the sweet potato breeding, and was awarded the third grade prize of National Science and Technology Advancement.

“The R&D and application of sweet potato virus-free technology system” promoted increasing the sweet potato production, and was awarded the second grade prize of Jiangsu province Science and Technology Advancement.

More than 1200 germplasms of sweet potato and its wild relatives have been collected and preserved. More than 30 sweet potato cultivars have been bred, including Xushu 18, from Xushu22 to Xushu 30, from Xuzishu 1 to Xuzishu 4. The planting area accounts for about 50% of the Country's sweet potato cultivation.

We have gained many important achievements in the study on many sweet potato research fields, such as “the sweet potato idioplasm preserves technical research and database management”, “examination technical to detect the viral disease and detoxification technology ”, “the theory of breeding and biotechnology”, “quality analysis and evaluation system”, “the seed potato storage”, “simple agricultural machinery research and development”, ” “food processing technology”, “diseases and insect pests prevention and control”. Etc.

We have established good collaborative relationships with such international organization as CIP, AVRDC, meanwhile, with other nations such as the USA, Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Korea, Cuba. etc.