AFBI to enter into new agreement with long-term grass-breeding partner Barenbrug

Date published: 02 March 2023

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The AFBI forage grass breeding programme based at Loughgall, and supported by funding from the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), will enter into a new commercial agreement in 2023 with long-term commercial partner Barenbrug.

Pictured L-R, Suzanne Johnston (AFBI), Mhairi Dawson (Barenbrug UK), Gillian Young (Grass Breeder, AFBI), David Linton (Barenbrug), Paul Johnston (Barenbrug) and Elizabeth Magowan (AFBI DCEO)

This highly successful collaboration has seen the development of more than 40 ryegrass varieties, each of which has brought consistent improvements in traits such as yield, digestibility and disease resistance to improve productivity and raise outputs on farm.

The need for new grass varieties may never have been more pressing, with the requirement for increased efficiencies in ‘green growth’ traits such as climate resilience, nutrient uptake and methane release growing with each passing year.

This new agreement will enable continued production and commercialization of new, improved, grass varieties well into the future to help industry mitigate against climate change and underpin the role of grasslands as part of a ‘greener’ future livestock industry.

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