WGRF Invests $5.2 Million for U of S Wheat Breeding

February 18, 2016 at 11:56 AM

cdc

The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) and the University of Saskatchewan Crop Development Centre (CDC) announced today that they have renewed their long standing partnership in wheat breeding. WGRF will invest $5.2 million into the wheat breeding program at the Crop Development Centre over the next five years. 

WGRF and the CDC have had a collaborative agreement for long-term breeding of barley and wheat since 1995. Since then, the CDC has released and commercialized over 30 varieties of wheat and durum with improved agronomic performance and end-use qualities. 

“Farmers have been well served by this partnership with the CDC,” says Dave Sefton, WGRF Board Chair. “Farmer funding through the wheat check-offs has helped facilitate the development of dozens of well-known wheat and durum varieties, including CDC Verona, and CDC Utmost VB that offers wheat midge tolerance, to name just a few.”

“This funding builds on 20 years of collaborative research with western Canadian farmers through WGRF,” says Kofi Agblor, Managing Director of the Crop Development Centre.  “Renewed funding expands our research program in wheat to include the deployment of molecular tools to improve breeding efficiency as well incorporating agronomic and quality traits that are vital to making wheat a competitive crop for our producers”.

“WGRF is very excited about the productive pipeline of wheat varieties at the CDC,” says Garth Patterson, WGRF Executive Director. “WGRF renewing these long-term agreements helps create stability for the wheat breeding program, and allows the CDC to leverage additional dollars from different levels of government as well as other industry partners.” 

Backgrounder
WGRF is a farmer funded and directed non-profit organization investing in agricultural research that benefits western Canadian producers. WGRF is the largest producer funder of variety development and field crop research in Canada. For 35 years the WGRF Board has given producers a voice in agricultural research funding decisions. WGRF manages an Endowment Fund and the wheat and barley variety development check-off funds, investing over $19 million in research in 2015. 

The WGRF also provides CDC researchers with additional financial support for projects outside of these agreements. The projects involve research in areas such as plant pathology, gene sequencing and the development of new technologies that will allow plant breeders to develop new and improved cereal varieties more quickly and more efficiently.

Wheat breeding work supported by WGRF at the CDC will continue on the following four classes of wheat: Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS), Canada Western Amber Durum (CWAD), Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPS-R), Hard White Spring (CWHW).

WGRF Invests $1.9 M for Winter Wheat Breeding at the U of M

February 18, 2016 at 11:55 AM

The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) and the University of Manitoba announced today that they have renewed their partnership in wheat breeding. WGRF will invest $1.9 million over five years into Dr. Anita Brûlé-Babel’s winter wheat breeding program and the fusarium head blight (FHB) nursery.   

The winter wheat breeding program will deliver improved varieties of Canada Western General Purpose (CWGP) and Canada Western Red Winter (CWRW) wheat to producers. The focus of the breeding program is on developing varieties that are disease resistant, semi-dwarf, high yielding, cold hardy and suited to the higher moisture regions of the eastern prairies.

In addition, WGRF funds also support a coordinated Fusarium head blight screening nursery. This nursery provides services to wheat breeding programs across western Canada and provides both early and late generation testing for cultivar registration.

“The release of new general purpose and winter wheat varieties from the U of M, as well as the release of FHB resistant cultivars such as Waskada and Carberry is evidence of the great work being done at the University of Manitoba,” says Dave Sefton, WGRF Board Chair.

 “I congratulate Dr. Brûlé-Babel on receiving this support,” says Dr. Digvir Jayas, Vice-President (Research and International) and Distinguished Professor at the University of Manitoba. “Her research program at the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences and that of the FHB nursery is to be commended. They continue to advance and aid western Canadian producers.”

“Maintenance of a coordinated FHB screening nursery will continue to provide benefits for the wheat breeding programs across western Canada,” says Garth Patterson, WGRF Executive Director. “Locating the nursery in a FHB prone region and making use of the infrastructure at the U of M supports a western Canadian approach to wheat variety development.”

Backgrounder

WGRF is a farmer funded and directed non-profit organization investing in agricultural research that benefits western Canadian producers. WGRF is the largest producer funder of variety development and field crop research in Canada. For 35 years the WGRF Board has given producers a voice in agricultural research funding decisions. WGRF manages an Endowment Fund and the wheat and barley variety development check-off funds, investing over $19 million in research in 2015. 

The University of Manitoba winter wheat program and germplasm development has two main areas of priority. To develop Canada Western General Purpose (CWGP) and Canada Western Red Winter (CWRW) wheat varieties that are disease resistant, semi dwarf, high yielding, cold hardy and suited to the higher moisture regions of the eastern prairies. The primary objectives of germplasm development is to focus on conducting inheritance and mapping studies related to FHB resistance. Of particular importance with this work is training of undergraduate and graduate students and development of the human resource capacity of Canada.

The primary objective of the coordinated nursery is for evaluation of breeding lines for reaction to FHB. Lines from all spring wheat breeding programs across western Canada will be tested as well as winter wheat lines from the University of Manitoba breeding program. In total up to 12,000 single row plots will be evaluated in the nursery.

 

 

 

 

WGRF Invests Record $21.4 M for Wheat and Barley Breeding

February 08, 2016 at 09:45 AM

The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) and Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (AAFC) announced today that they have renewed their long standing partnership in wheat and barley breeding. WGRF will invest $20 million into wheat breeding and $1.4 million into barley breeding at AAFC Research Centres in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta over the next five years. This represents the largest ever industry investment into research at AAFC.

“Producer check-offs have played a vital role in funding long term research. It takes on average ten to thirteen years for a new variety to become commercially available,” says Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay. “Breeding programs require long-term stable funding in order to operate effectively and this is exactly what WGRF funding has provided.”

“The substantial investments made by producers into wheat and barley breeding since 1994 has aided in the development of the most popular varieties grown on the prairies today, says Dr. Keith Degenhardt, WGRF Vice-Chair. “Varieties like Lillian, Strongfield, Carberry, and Unity VB have offered not only higher yields but improved end use properties, and better disease and insect resistance compared to those previously grown in farmers’ fields.”    

“WGRF’s leadership role in developing both western and national approaches to funding wheat and barley breeding means that producers continue to get good value for their check-offs,” says Garth Patterson, WGRF Executive Director. “This commitment marks the 35th anniversary of WGRF investing in research to benefit western Canadian producers.”

WGRF has been investing farmer’s wheat and barley check-off dollars into breeding research since 1994. WGRF would like to thank Minister MacAulay and the Government of Canada for their continued partnership and investment in wheat and barley breeding.