Grass Breeding Strategy Gets Global Interest

NEW ZEALAND – A grass breeding research project combining the efforts of US and Kiwi experts has garnered interest in New Zealand and the States.
calendar icon 9 July 2015
clock icon 1 minute read

A US government grass breeding expert has partnered a Kiwi forage scientist to improve the efficiency of breeding grass for certain merits.

The project, which hopes to inform DairyNZ forage value indexes, has been covered by reporters on the Western Ag Info radio network in the US.

Dr Mike Casler at the US Department of Agriculture hosted Dr Zulfi Jahufer (pictured) from New Zealand recently to cooperate in work published in the journal Crop Science.

Dr Jahufer said: “Our specific study focused on improving the efficiency of breeding grass for yield and quality factors for biofuel, which is very similar to the yield and quality factors of value in pastoral contexts.

“We evaluated a breeding strategy based on a multi-trait selection index, compared to single trait approaches.”

He said breeding forage varieties will benefit from the work, which provides something of a “step-up” in breeding approaches to get the most genetic gain from multi-trait selection indices.

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