Breeding Methodology Meets Sustainable Agriculture
This review is about the contribution of plant breeding to sustainable agriculture. This contribution is based upon three main pillars: (i) The enrichment of the source material with landraces and old cultivars, accompanied by a breeding methodology based mainly on yield components, (ii) The screening of cultivars-parents and the choice of crossing according to their genotypic profile, proved through a series of criteria and (iii) The selection pattern applied in segregating generations, based on an individual plant performance as a unit of selection and evaluation. Comparable evaluation of progenies requires concurrent selection among and within progenies and application of high selection pressures. This selection procedure reduces genotype x environment interaction and increases heritability. A number of experiments as paradigms have been included throughout the text to better understanding. Breeding assumptions such as decentralized selection and participatory plant breeding have been accepted and incorporated in developing selected cultivars of low-input demands. The text as a whole follows a logical course, from source material, through breeding techniques and selection patterns to maximize heritability and efficiency offering in this way a sound solution in sustainable agricultural problems.