World’s first ‘speed breeding’ technique to produce Wheat: Australia

Inspired by NASA’s experiments to grow wheat in space, Australian scientists have developed the world’s first ‘speed breeding’ technique that can boost the production of the crop by up to three times. The NASA experiments involved using continuous light on wheat which triggered early reproduction in the plants.

The Australian scientists have used the technique to develop the new ‘DS Faraday’ wheat variety due for release to industry this year. DS Faraday is a high protein, milling wheat with tolerance to pre-harvest sprouting.

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By using speed breeding techniques in specially modified glasshouses scientists  can grow six generations of wheat, chickpea and barley plants, and four generations of canola plants in a single year – as opposed to two or three generations in a regular glasshouse, or a single generation in the field.

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