Eikhfel’d, Iogan Gansovich
Born Jan. 13 (25), 1893, in the city of Paide, in what is now the Estonian SSR. Soviet biologist, plant breeder, and public figure. Academician of the V. I. Lenin All-Union Academy of Agricultural Sciences (1935) and of the Academy of Sciences of the Estonian SSR (1946; president, 1950–68). Corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (1953). Hero of Socialist Labor (1963). Member of the CPSU since 1961.
In 1923, Eikhfel’d graduated from the Petrograd Agricultural Institute, where he was a student of N. I. Vavilov. In that year he also organized the Khibiny Agricultural Experiment Station in Murmansk Oblast; he was director of the station until 1930. From 1930 to 1940, after the station was reorganized, he was head of its arctic division. Eikhfel’d also directed the Arctic Experiment Station of the All-Union Institute of Horticulture. From 1940 to 1951 he was director of the All-Union Institute of Horticulture. Eikhfel’d was chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Estonian SSR and vice-chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR (1958–61).
Eikhfel’d’s work has been devoted mainly to problems of growing crops in the Far North, reclamation and cultivation of bog and mineral soils of the north, and the development of various new farming practices. He has bred early-maturing varieties of basic crops regionalized for the North.
Eikhfel’d was a delegate to the Twenty-second Congress of the CPSU and deputy to the fourth to sixth convocations of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. He received the State Prize of the USSR in 1942 and has been awarded six Orders of Lenin, the Order of the October Revolution, four other orders, and several medals.