Wheat quality master list update

Image of a person standing in a wheat crop

The continuing development of improved wheat varieties to match changing climatic and trade requirements puts the marketability of older varieties under close scrutiny.

PHOTO: Paul Jones

Wheat Quality Australia (WQA) released its 2016 Wheat Variety Master List on 1 September, with the addition of eight new varieties and the removal of 46 old varieties.

WQA Chairman Dr Don Plowman says the decision to remove old varieties from the list this year is part of WQA’s ongoing work to ensure Australian wheat continues to be competitive globally.

“Global wheat prices are historically low and Australia is being increasingly challenged to maintain its share in key export markets on a price basis – so Australia must continue to lead with quality,” Dr Plowman says.

“WQA’s role in managing the master list is not only to approve new varieties but also to ensure it’s as up to date as possible.

“This means removing varieties that are no longer relevant to contemporary market requirements, and reviewing varieties (still being grown) that may not meet the current quality requirements of their class.”

Flagged for removal in 2014, the 46 removed varieties were classified as being more than 10 years old with deliveries of less than 0.1 per cent. To provide maximum flexibility to growers these varieties remained on the list during 2014 and 2015, but as of 1 September will now only be received as feed.

The first in a number of changes to the master list expected over the coming years, a further 81 varieties were flagged in 2015 for removal in 2017, giving industry a chance to respond to the proposed changes, and growers the flexibility to deliver to their existing class in 2015 and 2016 before removal.

WQA also this year flagged a further 46 varieties that were classified more than 10 years ago with deliveries less than 0.1 per cent for removal from the master list. However, through consultation with industry, six of those 46 – Rosella, QAL2000, Anlace, Wylah, Marombi and Petrel – were requested for maintenance and have been retained.

An expert sub-committee of WQA’s Wheat Variety Classification Panel was also commissioned this year to conduct a science-based review of the performance of another 45 varieties that are still being delivered at 0.1 per cent or more, but which were classified more than 10 years ago.

Using data submitted for classification and other available high-quality data sets – to assess if the varieties still met the current requirements of their class – the group recommended that 16 varieties across all zones have their classification changed or reviewed.

These recommendations were then referred to a consultative group representing growers, agronomists and the trade, who accepted the recommendations for 14 of the 16 assessed varieties. More time was requested to assess market acceptance and the agronomic performance of potential replacement options for Calingiri and Strzelecki, due to their dominance in class or region. This consultation process will continue in 2017.

One of the reviewed varieties, EGA Gregory, was recommended for an upgrade to Australian Prime Hard (APH) in the south-eastern zone, effective from the 2016 harvest. The remaining 15 varieties will be accepted into their existing class this year and in 2017, with changes effective from 2018.

“Over the past three seasons we have reviewed and flagged more than 220 varieties for removal or reclassification,” Dr Plowman says.

“Many of these represent a tiny percentage of wheat grown in Australia – they are also no longer referenced in any state, industry or GRDC sowing guide, as they have been superseded by new varieties with better quality, agronomic and yield characteristics.

“In spite of this, it has been very important that we consult with breeders, growers, traders and end users to ensure their removal does not have any negative impact on production or marketing.

“We are all in this together and everyone has a responsibility to contribute to the positive brand reputation of Australian wheat.”

The WQA 2016 Wheat Variety Master List is now available from the WQA website. It will also be published in the Grain Trade Australia commodity standards.

Variety Current class
Proposed change
Reason
Outcome
Table 1 Wheat varieties with a changed class.
Strzelecki
APH Change to AH
Dough strength too weak
Request one additional season for review
Kennedy
APH Change to FEED
Fails LMA test, mjilling poor
Agreed
Cunningham
APH Change to AH
Dough strength too weak and inextensible, baking poor
Agreed
Batavia APH Change to AH Dough strength too weak
Agreed
Chara
APH Change to AH
Poor water absorption (not grown)
Agreed
H45 APW Change to ASW
Dough strength too weak (not grown)
Agreed
Hartog APH Change to AH
Poor milling and YAN
Agreed
Sunbrook
APH Change to AH
Poor YAN
Agreed
South-eastern zone (southern NSW)
EGA Gregory
AH Upgrade to APH
Not previously submitted, performance meets APH
Agreed
Batavia
APH Downgrade to AH
Dough strength too weak
Agreed
H45
APW Downgrade to ASW
Dough strength too weak
Agreed
Hartog APH Downgrade to AH
Poor milling and YAN
Agreed
Pugsley
APW Downgrade to ASW
Poor YAN
Agreed
Southern zone (Victoria and South Australia)
H45
APW Downgrade to ASW
Dough strength too weak
Agreed
Halberd
APW Downgrade to ASW
Dough strength too weak and inextensible
Agreed
Kelalac
APW Downgrade to ASW
Poor water and weak dough
Agreed
Pugsley APW Downgrade to ASW
Poor dough properties
Agreed
Spear APW Downgrade to ASW
Poor dough properties
Agreed
Western zone (Western Australia)
Calingri ANW Review Flour and noodle colour too white
Request one additional season for review
Carnamah AH Downgrade to APW
Milling extraction and dough strength – inadequate for AH
Agreed
Halberd APW Downgrade to ASW
Dough weak and inextensible
Agreed
Spear APW Downgrade to ASW
Dough weak and poor YAN
Agreed

APH: Australian Prime Hard; AH: Australian Hard; APW: Australian Premium White; ASW: Australian Standard White;
ADR: Australian Premium Durum; ASFT: Australian Soft; ANW: Australian Noodle Wheat; APWN: Australian Premium Noodle Wheat; FEED: Australian Feed; YAN: Yellow Alkaline Noodles; LMA: Late Maturity Alpha Amylase

More information:

Hugh Robertson, executive officer, Wheat Quality Australia,
hugh.robertson@wheatquality.com.au

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WA WeedSmart Week showcases progress

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