New super pea to be launched on Wednesday

Posted by Josette Dunn on 27th September 2010

A new variety of field pea with improved disease resistance and higher yields will be unveiled when the University of Sydney’s Plant Breeding Institute hosts the Sustainable Futures Forum and Field Day at Narrabri on Wednesday 29 September.Plant Breeding Institute Officer in Charge, Steve Moore said the new variety had yet to be named and is presently being referred to as PRL131.

“It is likely that the chosen name will follow previous releases and be named after Aboriginal weapons like the two varieties already available, Yarrum and Maki,” he said.

“PL131 is high yielding with improved disease resistance. It is a white seeded variety specifically aimed at planting in northern NSW and southern QLD. It has a large seed which makes it eligible for either the stock feed or human consumption markets and should be commercially available for the 2011 planting season.”

The variety was produced using conventional pedigree plant breeding methods.

The original cross was made by Adrian Russell of Plant Research NZ Ltd and the population was selected for release by Mr Moore, with funding from the Pork Cooperative Research Centre of Australia (Pork CRC).

Mr Moore said the variety would offer grain growers in the region a short season, high yielding white seeded field pea.

“The variety was also produced to provide pork producers in the region with a reliable protein source but can, subject to meeting specification, also be used in the human consumption market.

“PRL131 was specifically selected for the sub-tropical environments of northern NSW and Queensland but will be evaluated Australia-wide and also in targeted regions internationally.”

In addition to the new variety being launched, the Sustainable Futures Forum and Field Day at Narrabri will showcase the latest in commercial plant breeding and provide a forum to discuss emerging research activities. The event is open to the public, industry and research community.