Following is an excerpt from a report in Business Standard.

The NSC has transformed itself from the usual non-profit-earning PSU into a vibrant entity.

Private sector seed companies have, till now, had a virtual monopoly over the production and sale of seeds, mostly hybrid seeds, of high-value crops. This was chiefly because the public sector seed producers, besides being fewer in number, remained focused right from the beginning on the production of seeds of low-value but high-volume crops (basically cereals), where profits were low though the quantities to be handled were large. Besides, public sector units (PSUs) made little attempt to keep pace with time.

However, the much-needed change in the public seed sector is coming about now with the largest player, the National Seeds Corporation (NSC), adopting a corporate culture and deploying state-of-the-art technology to produce seeds even of high-value crops and hybrids.

Indeed, as could be expected, this change in the work culture has transformed the NSC from the usual non-profit-earning PSU into a vibrant entity striving to find a place among the mini-Ratnas, if not the Navratnas. The headquarters of the NSC and four of its regional units in Bhopal, Jaipur, Secunderabad and Bangalore, have already acquired the ISO 9001-2000 certificate and the remaining regional units are in the process of doing so.

… Indeed, the man behind this incredible transformation is the present chairman and managing director B B Pattanaik." I would be able to declare a much higher dividend for the current year, "asserts an enthusiastic Pattanaik. He has not only motivated the aging employees of this 45-year-old corporation for better performance but has also taken several new initiatives to be in a position to rub shoulders with the well-run private sector seed companies, many of which now have business tie-ups with the NSC.

… The NSC’s tissue culture unit with a capacity to churn out annually about two lakh test tube-raised plantlets for propagation of the banana is coming up in Bhubaneswar and may become operational by the next month. For research and development back-up, the NSC gets support from the vast agricultural research network of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and the state agriculture universities. This helps the NSC to add, on an average, around 20 new varieties and hybrids to its product range every year.