On 31 October 2017, the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization, NARO, in Tsukuba City, Ibaraki Prefecture, harvested rice that it had developed using genome editing. This year, six varieties of rice were planted in 10 ares (1/10 hectare) of paddy field. This rice has been named sink function modified rice
(see BJ April 2017
) and was developed to raise yields beyond conventional rice varieties. By destroying the gene of the enzyme that breaks down the plant hormone promoting the division of flower buds, the plant hormone is increased, the number of flower buds rises, which causes the number of seeds to increase, leading to a higher yield. The aim of the cultivation this time was to see if the yield would actually increase or not.