The National Oat Breeding Program, launched in Perth this morning and backed by joint $5.4 million investment from AgriFutures Australia and the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) over five years, will be propelled into a new era under the leadership of commercial breeding company, InterGrain.
The $11.5 million* commercial breeding Program will provide new varieties for milling and hay oats, side-by-side, with a broad genetic base equipped to respond to the changing needs of Australian growers and exporters.
This program is the only one of its type in the world and builds on research in hay and milling oat breeding by the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), a division of the Department of Primary Industries and Regions.
Strong engagement with the grain and hay value chains has been, and will continue to be, a key strength of the program as it enters a new era.
This is critical to ensure the retention of markets and growth opportunities for Australian milling and hay oats globally and in the domestic marketplace.
InterGrain's strengths lie in variety breeding and market development, both in the domestic and international marketplace.
InterGrain have strong research linkages across Australia and 40 research sites spread across the country, with over 200,000 field plots annually.
InterGrain brings new technologies to the National Oat Breeding Program, such as technology to enable genomic oat breeding at a very low cost.
They have developed a genomics platform with high SNP call rates and imputation for its barley and wheat program and will look to create a similar genomics tools to create a game changing asset for oat breeding.
The National Oat Breeding Program will be led by InterGrain, through funding from AgriFutures Australia and the Grains Research and Development Corporation, and supported by the Government of South Australia and the Western Australian Government
* The $11.5 million investment includes a joint contribution of $5.4m from AgriFutures Australia and the Grains Research and Development Corporation as well as $5.4m from InterGrain and $750,000 from the Western Australian Agriculture Authority.