Virtual Dry Bean Open House Highlights Research Program and Beans Available for License

Posted on Thursday, September 2nd, 2021

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On August 26, the University of Guelph’s dry bean breeding program held its annual open house to show off the scope of the research program and how they continue to develop new varieties to benefit Ontario growers. Led by Prof. Peter Pauls, the open house describes the breeding process from initial cross to selecting experimental lines after 5 generations, and from there 5 additional years of trials, where varieties are evaluated for yield, maturity, harvestability, cooking quality and disease resistance, with only the best varieties being supported for registration in Canada by the Ontario Pulse Committee. Presentations from research staff and students described how resistance to anthracnose and common bacterial blight (CBB) is evaluated; progress on specialty varieties such as adzuki style beans that now make up to 20% of acres grown in Ontario; and work on specialty traits, including non-darkening and slow-darkening traits.

Past varieties that have been released from the program include OAC Dynasty (dark red kidney) and OAC Yeti (white kidney), which have resulted in direct financial benefit to Ontario growers exceeding $1.5 million due to their excellent yields, according to Ontario Bean Growers.

A full-length recording of the open house can be viewed online.

Some of the top varieties emerging from the program are now available for license in Canada and USA!

The University’s Research Innovation Office has initiated an open call for license proposals for six new varieties for 2021, including two navy bean varieties, one cranberry bean variety and three pinto bean varieties. For the first time this year, two of the pinto varieties include a ‘non-darkening’ trait, a genetic trait that prevents the seed coat from darkening or changing colour - even after prolonged storage.

To review the call for proposals and find out how to bid for a commercial license, please refer to the Fall 2021 Call for License Proposals: Dry Bean Cultivars.

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