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Outstanding spring barley launched for commercial growing

News - 04.02.22



With provisional approval for brewing, Skyway which joined the RL in 2021/22 well clear of other spring barleys in yield has been launched for commercial growing this season after three years of extensive Agrii field testing.

The RGT Planet cross bred by Nordic Seed, boasts current UK Recommended List treated and untreated yields ahead of previous malting mainstays, Laureate and RGT Planet with Propino level specific weights and screenings.

Married with excellent agronomics, this makes it a variety that ticks all the boxes, believes Agrii seed technical manager, John Miles.

“Skyway stands out for a level of spring barley progress we haven’t seen since the arrival of RGT Planet and Laureate over six years ago,” he says. “And its RL performance leaves more recent introductions like SY Splendor, SY Tungsten and Firefoxx in the shade too.

“As importantly, it has been performing every bit as well in our own extensive trials under more commercial agronomy. With a fungicide-treated average yield of 7.35t/ha (105% of same controls as the RL) it is the clear top performer among the 13 varieties we have tested over eleven sites for the past three years.

“At 6.3t/ha (90% of the treated controls) it is even further ahead of the field in untreated yield. And a specific weight of over 65kg/hl puts it more than a kg/hl above the next best malting variety, making it especially marketable under conditions that can make malting specifications challenging to achieve.

“A decision on full approval for brewing is not expected until May but the variety’s all-round strengths and the experience of a number of growers producing it with us commercially on Viterra buyback contracts last season leave us confident Skyway will not disappoint.

“We have a good amount of seed available for 2022 planting but are already seeing considerable demand from those who have been following the variety closely as through both the RL and our own testing.”

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