Source: University of Minnesota

Improved Fusarium head blight resistance is one of the features of Quest, a new malting barley variety released by the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station.

The spring, six-rowed barley is the first University of Minnesota malting barley variety with improved resistance to Fusarium head blight, commonly known as scab. Quest accumulates half the level of deoxynivalenol (DON), a damaging toxin produced by the fungus responsible for Fusarium head blight (scab). Quest is similar in yield to the varieties Tradition and Lacey which account for 70 percent of the Midwest barley acreage.

"Quest's resistance derives from barley varieties that trace back to China and Switzerland," said Kevin Smith, who leads the barley breeding program at the University of Minnesota. The time consuming work of developing scab resistant barley varieties is supported by the federally-funded U.S. Wheat and Barley Scab Initiative, the state-funded Minnesota Small Grains Initiative and the American Malting Barley Association (AMBA).

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