Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Fields need a diversity of indigenous cereal crops

19.07.2004


The history of cultivated plants in Finland stretches back some 3,500 years. Cultivated plants usually arrived in Finland from elsewhere with new settlers. Landraces were still widespread in the early part of the 20th century, but then improved varieties produced in plant breeding programmes began to gain ground in the 1920s. As a consequence, the landraces, which were well adapted to local conditions, are no longer grown to any large extent, and thus they no longer contribute to the diversity of our grain fields. The characteristics of the landraces are little known and they are in limited use in agriculture today.



It is essential for food safety now and in coming generations that we can safeguard the gene pool. Because we cannot know what we may need in the future, it is important to maintain the widest possible selection of genetic material for the use of farmers, researchers, plant breeders and other users. Landraces of both plants and animals are a part of our invaluable heritage and the history of our nation. The most common way of preserving genetic materials is to deposit seeds in gene banks. Apart from that, the most natural preservation method would be to cultivate plants in their original environment. Subsidies are available for the preservation of landraces and old commercial varieties of cereals.

Making the most of the gene bank


Finnish seed collections of national value are chiefly stored at the Nordic Gene Bank (NGB) in Alnarp in Southern Sweden. The gene bank is in its 25th year of operations this year. At the beginning of the year, Bent Skovmand took over as director, transferring from CIMMYT, Mexico. Skovmand is at present taking part in the International Oat Conference in Helsinki on July 18-22, where he is advocating more efficient use of the collections stored in gene banks.

There are about 1,600 deep-frozen Finnish seed samples at NGB, of which 92 are oats. Most of them are varieties and breeder’s lines. There are 14 landraces. The earliest Finnish oat varieties are Ilola (1903), Sapeli, Kerttu (1919), Pohjola (1919), Tuotto (1920), Veikko (1920), Nopsa (1921), Jalostettu maatiaiskaura (1921), Osmo (1921), Kytö (1925) and Pelsonkaura (1925). Of the above, only Jalostettu maatiaiskaura, Kytö, Osmo and Pelso are stored in the NGB collections. The most valuable feature of the landrace oats was their short growth season, while their biggest disadvantages were weak stems and low yield. They may, however, possess other valuable features which could be utilized.

At present, the collections of the gene bank are not used much. The gene bank can be contacted with inquiries concerning old Finnish landraces or commercial varieties, of which the gene bank can supply a seed sample (www.ngb.se). It is also possible to send seeds to the gene bank. If anyone still has old Finnish landraces or commercial varieties, they can contact MTT (Agrifood Research Finland) or the gene bank direct. MTT is in charge of coordinating Finland’s national plant genetic resources programme for agriculture and forestry, which started in 2003, and also implements the programme where agricultural and horticultural plants are concerned.

Mia Sahramaa | alfa
Further information:
http://www.mitt.fi
http://www.ioc2004.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New gene for atrazine resistance identified in waterhemp
24.02.2017 | University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

nachricht Researchers discover a new link to fight billion-dollar threat to soybean production
14.02.2017 | University of Missouri-Columbia

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>