Idaho July Field Day To Highlight Collaborative Wheat Breeding Effort

Farmers will have a chance to look over foreign wheat varieties.

Published on: Jun 29, 2012

A July 9 University of Idaho wheat breeding field day will focus on top European varieties and showcase benefits of an innovative collaboration between UI and Limagrain Cereal Seeds.

Wheat varieties selected for high production and disease resistance in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, the Czech Republic and Germany will be exhibited during the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Parker Farm two miles east of Moscow, Ida.

The field day begins at 3 p.m. and concludes with a dinner sponsored by Limagrain Cereal Seeds. Wheat researchers from the college and Limagrain will review a joint effort to improve wheat varieties available to Pacific Northwest growers.

Idaho July Field Day To Highlight Collaborative Wheat Breeding Effort
Idaho July Field Day To Highlight Collaborative Wheat Breeding Effort

"The field day will give growers and everyone else a chance to see the merits of this innovative collaboration," says Donn (cq) Thill, the college's associate dean and Idaho Agricultural Experiment Station director.

The joint field day reflects one aspect of a dramatic year for wheat research a UI. The Idaho Wheat Commission began the year by announcing a decision to create two $1 million endowments to support two wheat breeding and disease researchers.

During the Commission's January announcement in Boise, the college and Limagain officials also announced their intent to collaborate on wheat breeding.

Jim Peterson, vice president for research at Limagrain, calls the collaboration "an exciting opportunity to build on the complementary strengths of  the University of Idaho and Limagrain wheat programs."

"The field day will be a change for participants to see the breeding lines, and they'll see what's being developed in the varieties nearing release for growers," notes Thill.

He says the college will reallocate research and extension positions as part of the wheat initiative. The plan includes a Lewiston-based, multi-county UI Extension position, and a Moscow-based teaching and research plant nutritionist and research and extension cropping system agronomist.

 For additional information, contact Thill at (208) 885-6214, or via email at dthill@uidaho.edu.