A tractor and drill planting wheat© Tim Scrivener

The latest fully approved Group 1 winter wheat variety, Zyatt has got the thumbs up from a leading flour miller and baker, deemed suitable for traditional and specialist baking applications. 

Since joining the Recommended List at the end of last year and gaining full Nabim approval in mid-March, the highest yielding breadmaking variety on the Recommended List has started to receive industry endorsements.

See also: High-yielding winter wheat variety wins full milling approval

Shaun Taylor of Rank Hovis Milling confirmed samples of Zyatt assessed by the company have shown the process performance and final product quality expected of a high-performing Group 1 type.

“As the new kid on the block, it was good to see it equalling the standards set by existing variety choices in terms of final product quality,” he says.

“It also has a tendency to deliver finer-textured products in a number of diverse applications, making it suitable for today’s changing bakery marketplace, as well as performing slightly better than its competitors when part of a gristed blend.”

Influence

Mr Taylor adds that a variety’s influence on baked product quality is important, especially as consumer tastes become more complex and different flours are needed for different processes.

“Although the bakery market is worth £3.6bn in total, we’re seeing a decline in categories such as wrapped bread and rolls, but an increase in wrapped bakery snacks and breads of the world,” he explains.

“This means that we are having to look at different wheats to produce bagels, for example, to the ones we use to produce a sliced, white loaf.”

Variety can have an influence on dough characteristics and baked good characteristics, both of which affect the final quality of the baked product, he adds.

“So things such as stickiness and elasticity of the dough, or product texture and volume, are important. It’s why bakers are increasingly talking about varieties, rather than Nabim groups.”

Quality evaluation

In his company’s quality evaluation tests, Zyatt was used to make white and wholemeal bread in artisan and high-speed baking processes, as well as being used in specialist applications such as pizza, bagels, bulk fermentation and blends.

“In the artisan and high-speed processes, Zyatt gave the same finished product quality as other Group 1 varieties,” he reports.

“In bulk fermentation, it gave strong dough characteristics and produced final products with a close texture, soft crumb and good flavour.

“It was better than other Group 1 varieties and commercial flour samples.”

As pizza dough, it stretched out to the desired shape and size, but shrank back a bit more than the control.

In bagels, it did better than the control, showing good resilience to processing stresses and resulting in products with the desired close and chewy texture.

“KWS Zyatt is a solid Group 1 variety,” stresses Mr Taylor. “It’s got some uniqueness, which suits the bakery categories that are growing, so it adds some colour to my palette.”

His final point is it seems to offer this good performance at lower natural protein levels.

  • These experts were speaking at a recent briefing organised by KWS and held in central London.

Zyatt at a glance

Neither of the parents of Zyatt, Hereford and Quartz, achieved Recommended List recommendation, revealed KWS wheat breeder Mark Dodds.

However, the combination of Hereford’s very high yields and Quartz’s strong agronomic characteristics has produced a variety with yield, short stiff straw, disease resistance and end-use quality, as well as good second wheat performance.

“It also has the genetic basis for functional protein, which is why it bucks the trend for protein dilution at high yields.”

His colleague, Will Compson, anticipates that Zyatt will achieve an 8% market share this autumn.

“It has to be in contention if you’re looking for a variety with yield and marketability.”

Factor Zyatt Skyfall Trinity Illustrious Crusoe
Treated yield (%) 102 101 99 98 97
Protein content (%) 11.9 11.9 11.6 11.8 12.5
Specific weight 77.7 77.9 76.9 76.8 77.3
Hagberg 273 291 342 273 262