6 September 2002

Higher yielding peas threaten market leaders

DESPITE a poor season, pea growers have plenty to look forward to as trial results confirm current market leaders could soon be superseded by new higher yielding types, says PGRO.

"We have had some good results from Hardy, Lumina and Soprano," says PGRO director Geoffrey Gent. "They are moving ahead of the two main commercial types Nitouche and Venture."

Provisional results put Nitouches yield at 102% of controls this year. Venture has managed 101% but some of the newer types have hit 111%.

"There is one obvious loser, the popular and widely grown Espace is slipping behind the others for yield."

Its performance as a % of controls remains on 98%, adrift of Nitouche and Venture and even further off the pace of some of the newer varieties in the trials.

CPB Twyfords white seeded Hardy is out front on yield with score of 111, three points ahead of Lumina on 108. Advantas large blue variety Power scores 103, just ahead of a pack of varieties on 102.

"These new ones look as if they will give the current commercially grown types a run for their money, but before they become available some of the varieties in their final year of trialing could take over.

"But yield is not everything. Harvest 2002 has exposed some of the limitations, such as lodging, that could affect commercial uptake. Another important consideration is market suitability. Larger seeded peas are in greatest demand," says Mr Gent.

&#8226 New variety surge.

&#8226 Hardy leading pack.

&#8226 Espace out paced.

&#8226 Nitouche up, Croma down on year.