The annual recommendation list of barley varieties is out for 2021, with some very familiar names and a few up-and-coming varieties, as well.

The Canadian Malting Barley Technical Centre (CMBTC) releases the list each year, identifying varieties that hold the most promise for producers in terms of selection and marketability based on current acceptance in the market place.

All of the varieties have been pilot tested at the CMBTC and each of them exhibits very good malting and brewing characteristics, the organization says.

Leading the list are CDC Copeland, AC Metcalfe, and AAC Synergy, with established demand in the market. AAC Connect, CDC Bow, and CDC Fraser are the next three listed, with a “growing demand” distinction.

The domestic malting industry in Canada has been testing these new varieties over the past several years with positive results, while the CMBTC has been working with international customers to undertake production trials on location to gain acceptance, says the CMBTC.

CMBTC list for 2021-22

“AC Metcalfe has been a remarkably successful variety worldwide for over 15 years that helped solidify Canada as a supplier of premium quality malting barley. However improved field performance of new varieties including significantly higher yields, better lodging resistance and improved disease packages, will help Canadian malting barley stay competitive in the global market, while offering excellent malting and brewing attributes for both mainstream and all malt brewers,” says Peter Watts, managing director of the CMBTC.

Farmers are encouraged to talk to their  malting barley buyer(s) to discuss which varieties are best suited for production and selection in their region. The CMBTC recommends farmers have a production contract, particularly when growing new malting barley varieties.

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