28 November 1997


ITS all change for winter wheat varieties but steady progress among spring and winter barleys recommended for use in Scotland by the SAC.

The hard pruning of the wheat list reflects problems with lodging, yellow rust and market demands earlier this year, says David Cranstoun of the SAC. Brigadier, Hussar, Charger, Equinox and Reaper have all been moved into the class for varieties considered less suitable for the north east.

That leaves Riband as the key variety, with support from biscuit-making Consort. Soft wheat Madrigal takes top yield and Rialto has been returned to general approval as a useful added-value group 2 wheat, provided milling specifications are met.

As for the UK recommended list, Savannah is the only newcomer, with a yield 4% ahead of Riband but limited distilling value.

Among the winter barleys Chalice wins SAC support, with a Scottish yield close to Optic and Chariots maturity. Rhynchospo-rium resistance is two points better than Chariot and micro-malting results comparable, says the SAC.

Meanwhile, Derkado has been moved to a special recommendation for distillers still keen to pay a premium for the variety, which yields 3% below Chariot. Tyne has been removed from the SAC list and Riviera regains general approval as a relatively high yielding feed type.

Good results from winter malting barley Regina have won it a full SAC recommendation and six-row feeder Muscat gets a similar accolade. New barley yellow mosaic virus resister Jewel, with a yield to match Pastoral, gets provisional approval, as does Vertige, with its Muscat-like feed yield and stiff straw.

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