Greenvale AP is to make a limited amount of its seed variety, Vales Sovereign, available on the open market to Scottish growers.

“It can grow on land with little or no irrigation and has excellent common scab resistance,” says seed and procurement director for Greenvale AP, David Rankin.

“Typically farmers can save £400/ha in irrigation costs alone.”

Cost savings can also be made on nitrogen, with requirements being much lower than that of comparable varieties.

“Vales Sovereign has good disease resistance to blight, black dot and black leg. This was particularly important during a wet growing season such as last year in Scotland. It performs well in store and has low waste levels,” he says.

Growers that have planted the variety have been encouraged by the results. “Using a variety like Vales Sovereign is vital because it does not need a great deal of management input in terms of nitrogen and thrives on light to medium bodied land without irrigation,” says Russel Brown, a grower who farms in Inverdovat, near Newport in Fife.

“It allows me to concentrate resources on higher maintenance varieties such as Maris Piper.”

Seed is available for next year on the premise that it is sold back to Greenvale AP only.