The benefits of developing and releasing salinity-tolerant and phosphorous-deficiency-tolerant rice in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia and the Philippines are estimated for marker-assisted breeding (MAB) and for conventional breeding (CB) using economic surplus analysis. Marker-assisted breeding is estimated to save at least 3–6 years in the breeding cycle and result in incremental economic benefits over 25 years in the range of $50 to $900 million compared to CB, depending on the country, stress, and time lags. Saline and phosphorus-deficient soils are difficult problems to address through CB because of undesirable traits that accompany desirable ones during the breeding process. Marker-assisted breeding, enabled by advances in genomics and molecular mapping is more precise and time-saving. Costs are estimated at $3.4 million for MAB and $2.5 million for CB, and hence the additional net benefits of MAB in rice far exceed those for CB.
Alpuerto, V.L.E.B.; Norton, G.W.; Alwang, J.; Ismail, A.M. Economic Impact Analysis of Marker-Assisted Breeding for Tolerance to Salinity and Phosphorous Deficiency in Rice. Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy (2009) 31 (4) 779-792. [DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9353.2009.01466.x]