Vegetables are the best source of food nutrients needed for the balanced human diet. These are not only providing macro food nutrients but also micro ones like vitamins and minerals which make the balanced diet with combination of cereals. Their therapeutic value has also been established as they decrease cholesterol level, provide protection to respiratory diseases and intestinal disorders and reduce accumulation of carcinogenic substances besides slowing down aging of human body.
Research on vegetables was started in Pakistan with establishment of a Vegetable Research Section at the Punjab Agricultural College and Research Institute, Lyallpur (Faisalabad) in 1938. It was merged with the Fruit Section in 1945 and brought under the administrative control of the Fruit Specialist. In 1950, it was again separated from the Fruit Section and an independent post of Vegetable Botanist was created to head the Vegetable Section.
With the bifurcation of research and education in 1962, the vegetable section became a component of the newly created Ayub Agricultural Research Institute, Lyallpur. In 1975, this Vegetable Section was upgraded to the status of Vegetable Research Institute and its administrative control was vested in the newly created post of Director.