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- higher crop yield per area (hectare)
- improved response to fertilizers
- high reliance on irrigation and fertilizers - see intensive farming
- early maturation
- "Development and Spread of HIGH-YIELDING VARIETIES OF WHEAT AND RICE in the Less Developed Nations" (PDF). U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT IN COOPERATION WITH U.S. AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT. 1978.