Two new spring barley varieties, Glassel and Momentum, have sown initial promise for the malt and distilling market which will be of interest to Scottish growers.

To gain national listing, the two varieties have undergone micro-malting tests. And, out of the total of 11 candidates, the new varieties have shown the most potential for Scottish growers.

“Visually they also show no signs of agronomic weaknesses, but until they have gone through the national listing and been truly tested it is difficult substantiate,” said Steve Hoad, team leader for agronomy, physiology and genetics at the SAC.

“For the coming season, however, I expect Concerto to dominate the market share again with its proven performance.

“Odessey, Chronicle and Overture are in their first year of recommendation, so we will have some data from large scale malting tests, which we will report next spring and will give us an idea of the stand out choices,” said Dr Hoad.

In two-row winter varieties, Dr Hoad sees KWS varieties Discovery and Glacier as contenders to compete with the established quartet of Cassia, Saffron, Retriever and Florentine. “They both have high yield potential, and are certainly varieties northern growers should keep an eye on once national listing is completed.”

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