BRENDON CANT brendon at iinet.net.au
Wed Mar 31 03:33:02 CEST 2010

March 31, 2010
To encourage the 2010 growing of Berkshire, the new high yielding triticale,
meetings of triticale growers, agronomists, pork producers and feed mills
were recently hosted by Australia’s Pork Cooperative Research Centre (CRC),
co-developer of the variety with The University of Sydney and the Grains
Research and Development Corporation.

Berkshire was one of three new grain varieties from Pork CRC plant breeding
projects released for commercial sowing during the 2009 season and now
available for extensive release. The others were the field pea, Maki and the
barley, Shepherd.

Berkshire seminar attendees were told by Pork CRC Program One Manager, Dr
Ray King, that, at an average digestible energy (DE) content of 13.9 MJ
DE/kg, Berkshire contained about 0.5 MJ DE/kg more than the average energy
in other triticale varieties, including Tahara.

“The higher DE content of Berkshire was confirmed by AusScan feed analysis
on samples of Berkshire collected from around Australia during the current
2009/10 harvest, making it similar to the ‘average’ wheat,” Dr King

The revolutionary AusScan technology, released by the Pork CRC last year,
predicts DE content with an accuracy of ± 0.27 MJ/kg and is now available
from major Australian feed testing laboratories.

Dr King urged pork producers and feed suppliers to routinely analyse grain
to assist in purchasing decisions and to adjust their feed formulations to
maximise productivity.

There is considerable variation in the nutrient value of grains, according
to Dr King, with energy values varying by up to 4 MJ DE/kg within a cereal

Following a limited release last year through Waratah Seeds, Berkshire was
grown commercially in several pork producing regions, performing very well,
while outyielding other triticales and often outyielding wheat grown on the
same farm.

“There is anecdotal information from WA suggesting Berkshire yields, at
three tonnes per hectare, were superior to wheat and other triticales,” Dr
King said.

A controlled marketing system involving growers and end-users will enable
pork producers and grain growers to benefit from Berkshire’s yield and
quality advantages.

According to ABARE (2007), triticale comprised about 13% of the cereal
grains in Australian pig diets, with wheat at 38%, barley at 30% and sorghum
at 14%. About half a million tonnes of triticale is currently grown across

For more information about the new Pork CRC supported feed grains,
Berkshire, Maki and Shepherd, interested grain growers and pork producers
can contact Dr Ray King, Manager, Pork CRC Program One, ‘Securing more
reliable and consistent supplies of protein and energy for pig diets’, Mob
0412 322 047 or Email r.h.king at bigpond.net.au

For specific agronomic advice regarding Berkshire, including preferred
growing zones, disease resistance and management of stripe rust, growers
should contact Waratah Seeds, The Seed Professionals, via their website
www.waratahseeds.com.au or email info at waratahseeds.com.au

A second Pork CRC developed triticale variety, JRCT400, is on-line for
release with Waratah Seeds, which is bulking up seed this season.


Authorised by Pork CRC and issued on its behalf by

Brendon Cant & Associates, Tel 08 9384 1122.


Dr Ray King, Manager, Pork CRC Program One, Mob 0412 322 047

Dr Roger Campbell, CEO, Pork CRC, Mob 0407 774 714.

Feed Grains.doc/King/Campbell300310

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