Spring feed barleys see increase in yield

Three new two-row feed varieties join the winter barley Recommended List, while five new spring varieties have been added, including a feed type offering a step up in yield at 110%.

Of the winter barleys, KWS Tower and Syngenta’s Tetris get a UK recommendation, with Limagrain’s Cavalier being approved for the North.

All three of the new winter varieties are resistant to barley yellow mosaic virus, says HGCA’s Simon Oxley. “Both KWS Tower and Tetris have a yield of 106%, putting them on a par with existing choice, KWS Glacier,” he reports. “Tetris is taller, with slightly weaker straw, while KWS Tower has stiff straw and good resistance to lodging.”

An 8 for rhynchosporium will make Tetris of interest to growers in the wetter regions, believes Dr Oxley. “Cavalier’s recommendation for the North reflects where it has performed best, but it has a 5 for rhynchosporium.”

Clare Leaman of NIAB TAG is of a similar view. “KWS Tower is an alternative choice to KWS Glacier, KWS Cassia and the hybrid barleys, giving growers more choice. Tetris has an excellent rhynchosporium rating in its favour.”

Nidera’s Russell Frost thinks they both add real depth to the Recommended List. “They’re strong contenders and there will be demand for them, with KWS Tower justifying its top ranking and just being the stronger of the two.”

The spring barley list has been boosted by four new malt brewing types, including KWS Irina, Syngenta’s Shaloo, KWS Aurelia and Agrii’s Hacker, all of which will now go through the first stage of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling’s two-year testing regime. Syngenta’s new feed variety Shada has also been recommended and tops the feed category with a yield of 110%.

None of the malting types are dual purpose, confirms Dr Oxley. “KWS Irina is the highest yielding at 109%. It has good resistance to mildew and ramularia, as well as brackling.

“Shaloo has a yield of 108% and good resistance to mildew and rhynchosporium. It also has the stiffest straw of the four.”

KWS Aurelia, another high-yielding choice at 107%, is susceptible to rhynchosporium. “However, it does have the best ramularia resistance rating.”

Hacker is lower yielding at 105%, but it has the highest specific weight and is earlier maturing than the other three, says Dr Oxley.

“Growers looking for a feed variety should consider the whole list now.”

Shada, the only new feed variety, has a yield of 110%, putting it 4% ahead of Tesla. “This is an interesting variety,” says Dr Oxley. “It tops the table for treated and untreated yield, has stiff straw and good resistance to brackling, as well as good disease scores.

“So it should be a bit more forgiving in the field if spray timings get disrupted.”


A total of four new oat varieties have been added to the 2014/14 HGCA Recommended List – two winter varieties and two spring types.

Rhapsody from Senova becomes the highest-yielding conventional winter oat with a yield of 109%, while the naked oat Beacon joins the list with a yield just below that of Fusion, but with a 9 for mildew resistance.

Rhapsody has a lower kernel content than Mascani, says Dr Oxley, but he adds that millers look for a combination of kernel, content, specific weight and screenings.

Monaco and Conway, both from Senova, join the spring oats Recommended List, with yields of 104% and 101%, respectively.

“Monaco becomes the highest-yielding spring oat at 104%. It’s relatively short with good resistance to lodging.”

Conway has a yield of 102%, but better grain quality than others and good resistance to mildew, he says.

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HGCA Recommended Lists 2014-15

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