CHICKPEA growers will have the opportunity for more reliable production with the release of a new desi chickpea variety, PBA Seamer.
The new variety promises to deliver superior disease resistance and standability over existing lines.
Former Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) northern panel chair, James Clark, said PBA Seamer (CICA 0912) offered superior disease resistance to existing varieties PBA HatTrick and PBA Boundary, with the potential to deliver valuable yield benefits in high-pressure disease years.
“PBA Seamer has a number of agronomic benefits that will help keep dollars in growers’ pockets through yield improvements and reductions in fungicide costs,” Mr Clark said.
“This is particularly relevant in years like this one where large areas of the north are experiencing a wetter than average winter which vastly increases the risk of yield loss from diseases such as Ascochyta blight and botrytis grey mould.”
Mr Clark said PBA Seamer had the highest available Ascochyta blight resistance rating compared to PBA HatTrick and PBA Boundary, and was also moderately resistant to Phytophthora root rot.
“Under very high Ascochyta blight disease pressure, PBA Seamer outperforms with minimal yield loss, compared with 76 per cent yield loss in the current industry benchmark variety,” he said.
“This means, through reduced fungicide use the cost of production will drop by $21 million per annum compared to the current industry standard.”
PBA Seamer is a semi-erect plant type with superior lodging resistance and a larger seed size than PBA HatTrick and PBA Boundary and is preferred by end users due to a greater dahl milling yield.
It is broadly adapted to suit the northern production regions from central NSW to central Queensland.
The release is the result of targeted long term investment in chickpea breeding by the GRDC and research partners NSW Department of Primary Industries and Pulse Breeding Australia.