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Blossoming Ideas Creating Stronger Economies

News Article
14 November 2007

In Thailand, a flower is more than an ornament; it is the country's symbol and the main source of income for thousands of families.

With the help of nuclear technology to bring new colours and shapes to ornamental flowers, Prof. Siranut Lamseejan, at the Kasetsart University, Bangkok, has made a dream come true.

In a pioneer project supported by the Departments of Technical Cooperation and Nuclear Sciences and Applications of the IAEA, Prof. Lamseejan produced mutant flowers that appealed to florists and growers, and introduced many new varieties into the market. But she went even further on her project, and invited farmers from all over the country to bring their own material to be irradiated. After learning how to propagate and select the mutant flowers, the farmers took back the irradiated material to their nurseries.

More than 500 farmers took part in this project. They were able to choose which flowers they wished to market and started profiting from them. It was the strong belief that "induced mutation technology can be used directly by farmers to produce new varieties and that this technology is not specific or restricted only to plant breeders at universities or governmental organizations" that made Prof. Lamseejan pursue her dream and achieve this successful story that benefit many families and generations to come in Thailand.

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