The Institute is located at a distance of about 11 kilometers from Sahiwal city towards east on Lahore-Multan Highway. It is situated at latitude of 31°41 N and longitude of 73° 12 E and the elevation of 175 meters. The land of Yusafwala, District Sahiwal was converted into Government Seed Farms in the year 1925 and was handed over to the Agriculture Department (Extension Wing) for multiplication of quality seed of wheat, maize and cotton etc. Research work on maize was started in the 1940’s which was abandoned in its infancy with the partition of Sub-continent. A regular research work on maize was restarted after partition in the year 1953-54 at Faisalabad. The Seed Farms were transferred to Research Wing of Agriculture Department in the year 1958-59 and was converted into Hybrid Maize Seed Farms for conducting research and seed production of hybrid maize on large scale. In 1968-69 the status of this farm was raised to a research institute, named as Maize & Millets Research Institute, Yusafwala-Sahiwal. Research work on Sorghum and Pearl Millet was also initiated in addition to maize with the establishment of the Institute.
Maize, Sorghum and pearl millet are important subsistent summer grain crops of Pakistan, which have been helpful in averting many food crises of the country in the past. Prior to early seventies, about 75 percent of the maize produce was consumed as staple food in villages of NWFP and Punjab during winter season. Remaining 25% of maize produce was utilized in wet milling for production of different products including starch, modified starch and value added products. Some of the by-products were used in poultry and animal feed. Similarly sorghum and pearl millet were also used as staple diet in the production zones in Barani areas but its industrial use has been negligible in Pakistan. Later on with the change in dietary habits of the people wheat became the only staple grain in NWFP and Punjab province. Maize ranks third with respect to cultivated area after wheat & rice and first in case of grain production per unit area. Two maize crops in a year i.e. Kharif and spring are successfully grown in Punjab. Now-a-days maize grain is being used, as novelty food while sorghum and pearl millet is restricted to poultry/animal feed and pet birds. Around 60% of maize grain is used in poultry/animal feed industry, 30% in wet milling, 6% as food and 4% as seed / other purposes. The wet milling produces an array of products, by products and value additions.
Mission & Objectives
The objectives of the institute are:-
- To evolve high yielding hybrids/varieties of maize, sorghum and pearl millet
- Breeding for biotic and abiotic stresses
- To develop improved package of production technology
- To demonstrate promising hybrids/varieties and improved production technology
- Transfer of technology through print and electronic media
- To produce BNS, pre-basic, basic and certified seed