The short history of the Research Institute
Research Farm in Nyíregyháza was founded on the
recommendation of the Chamber of Agriculture on an area of 29 hectare in 1929,
together with the establishment of the winter farming school in the same year.
The objectives of the Research Farm were to study the utilization possibilities
of the sandy soils in Nyírség region, diffuse the results and provide farmers
with professional training.
Research Institute of Nyíregyháza
In 1948 the Research Farm was nationalized. In 1955 the then independent experimental stations of Kisvárda, Gyulatanya, Nyíregyháza, Nagykálló and Újfehértó were merged into the Research Farm to form the Agricultural Research Institute of Nyírség in order to concentrate research efforts on the regional level. The main activities were breeding, maintenance and seed-production of the crop species which can be successfully grown on sandy soils (rye, potato, alfalfa, lupine and sunflower) together with the improvement of the cultivation technology. The Institute was also charged with breeding fruit crops and improving fruit growing technologies, developing tobacco growing and tobacco curing technologies, as well as with analysing operational problems of the collective large-scale estates of the time and with the mechanisation of crop production and animal husbandry.
The headquarters building of the Institute was built from 1961 through 1965 on the area of the earlier Research Farm. At this time the Institute had 757 hectare experimental field and more than 500 employees. In 1969 the research institute was reorganised and it became the Agrotechnical Research Institute of Nyírség. The tasks were reduced and were restricted to research on cultural practices, together with a greater emphasis on breeding sunflower and potato. In 1975, the Research Institute was incorporated into the Seed Production and Trading Company, as the Research Centre of this company. After being reorganised again, the research objectives were redrafted. Plant breeding and maintenance of the genetic bases became more important, particularly for leguminous crops.
In 1992, the Research Centre was integrated to the Agricultural University of Debrecen by the decree of the Agricultural Minister (Nr. 30.063/1/1992) and it was entrusted with the research of the complex utilisation of sandy soils and breeding plant species and varieties, which can be grown with low risk under the unfavourable ecological conditions characterising the region. After the birth of Debrecen University with the merge of the city's independent educational institutions in the early 2000s, the institute is further working for the development of agriculture in this region as part of the Centre of Agricultural Science of Debrecen University.
Nowadays, the Research Institute has 623 hectares of land, and three stations located in Nyíregyháza, Kisvárda and Nagykálló. The main tasks are still to develop new cultivars, which can be grown safely under the unfavourable environmental conditions of the region, as well as to improve the production technology and to study the complex utilisation of sandy soils.
R&D activity in the Institute is supported by widespread domestic and international relations.
The Research Institute plays an active role in training growers by organizing field days and giving expert advice, and also takes part in university education. The Research Institute revives the nearly forgotten "regional research". The Institute holds together the genetic bases, technology, machinery, marketing work, costs and incomes as a whole, instead of only treating certain selected elements of production in the region.
By conducting agricultural research in Nyírség Region, the Institute plays a determinant role in rural development.
At the same time the institution helps the practical training and the rural extension.