The current new approvals demonstrate that the future of sugarbeets lies in breeding

Einbeck, February 19, 2021

Increasing regulations for crop protection and rising pathogen resistance to crop protection products: Both issues are intensifying the pressure on successful plant breeding. Solutions aimed at securing long-term and viable cultivation of sugarbeets are required. The German Plant Variety Office’s current new approvals of KWS sugarbeet varieties underscore that the KWS breeding methods are offering successful solutions.

With INSPIREA KWS and BLANDINA KWS, the new CR+ varieties recently approved by the German Plant Variety Office, KWS sugarbeet breeding experts have managed to combine the highest degree of protection against Cercospora with superior yields – regardless of the cultivation conditions. Successfully combining these factors in a single variety requires years of work in the field of breeding.

“With the virus-induced yellowing and syndrome basses richesses (SBR), there are other urgent issues being addressed by breeders. But until now, we only offer special varieties for these syndromes,” says Dr. Alexander Coenen, Regional Director German-Austria, Business Unit Sugarbeet. Varieties that already demonstrate tolerance, but do not offer the desired yield, are classified as special varieties. With MARUSCHA KWS, the German Plant Variety Office has approved one of the company’s special varieties that is tolerant to the yellows virus. Coenen: “When it comes to special varieties, the focus is clearly on the massive problem caused by the pathogen. That’s why they often exhibit lower yields than our classic varieties. Special varieties are sometimes the only alternative for severely infected areas.”

There were other new approvals for KWS in the CONVISO® SMART segment. With them, KWS is still testing the practicability of the weed control system especially for the German market. The new variety SMART THEKLA KWS also has a nematode tolerance. SMART MIREA KWS possesses impressive leaf health and represents a performance leap with respect to the sugar yield and adjusted sugar yield.

About KWS*
KWS is one of the world’s leading plant breeding companies. More than 5,700 employees in 70 countries generated net sales of around €1.3 billion in fiscal 2019/2020. A company with a tradition of family ownership, KWS has operated independently for more than 160 years. It focuses on plant breeding and the production and sale of seed for corn, sugarbeet, cereals, vegetables, rapeseed and sunflowers. KWS uses leading-edge plant breeding methods to continuously improve yield for farmers and plants’ resistance to diseases, pests and abiotic stress. To that end, the company invested more than €200 million last fiscal year in research and development.

* All figures excluding the shares of the equity-accounted companies AGRELIANT GENETICS LLC., AGRELIANT GENETICS INC. and KENFENG – KWS SEEDS CO., LTD.

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Ernst von Stockhausen
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