Commentary by DrSimon Oxley
The first set of harvest results from the AHDB Recommended List winter barley trials are based on four trials sited in Suffolk, Hampshire, Lincolnshire and Teesside.
Control varieties above five-year average
The yields of the control varieties from the four trials is 10.88 t/ha, which compares very favourably to the five-year average of 9.35 t/ha. Our highest yields have come from theTeesside site which averages 11.53 t/ha. So far, varieties are yielding in line with previous years.
So far, the six-row hybrid feed varieties continue to achieve the highest yields, with Volume at 107%of yield compared to control varieties and the two candidate varieties Bazooka(109%) and Belfry (107%) topping the yield table to date in 2015.
The six-row conventional variety KWS Meridian (104%) and Daxor (102%) are also performing well in 2015. KWS Meridian has also achieved the best untreated yield of current RL varieties. KWS Glacier currently achieves the highest two-row feed yield of current Recommended List varieties at 102%.
When it comes to brewing varieties, quality and market requirements take precedence over yield alone. In 2015, Talisman has achieved96% and SY Venture 93%. Both varieties have full IBD approval for brewing.
A word of caution
The 2015 yield values show the performance of varieties this season. When selecting varieties to grow for the coming season, the five-year average is a better indication of variety performance over a range of seasons. On the five-year average values,two-row feed varieties which have performed well include KWS Infinity, KWSGlacier and KWS Tower. All have a yield of 101% of the control varieties.