Redefined “hulless” grade recommended for oats

The committees that advise the Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) on grain grading specifications have both called for new specs in defining hulless oats starting with the 2009-10 season.

In separate releases Friday, the Western Standards Committee and Eastern Standards Committee both recommended revising the oat grade schedule for “hulled” and “hulless.”

The committees recommend the schedule now read, “No limit: If sample contain 75 per cent or more of hulless oats, hulless becomes part of the grade name.”

A revised grade schedule for oats would reflect the industry’s handling and marketing practices, the committees said. Most current contracts for hulless oats are for 75 per cent or more hulless oats, the committees said; to achieve a level of 95 per cent or more, “significant processing” would be required.

In the new proposed schedule, “the word ‘oats’ replaces ‘varieties’ because it is the percentage of hulled oats of any variety (covered or hulless) in the sample that is being measured to determine if the term ‘hulless’ should be attached to the grade name.”

Both committees also recommended that the CGC move from from K values to percentage values to measure the tolerances of ergot and sclerotinia in triticale, and for the tolerances of ergot and stones in hulless barley.

“Changing K values to percentage values for tolerances of ergot and sclerotinia in triticale and of ergot and stones in hulless barley is consistent with the move away from K values and towards percentage values,” the committees each said.

In their meetings April 21 and 22 respectively, the western and eastern committees also got updates on grading studies and projects and recommended that the CGC continue research on:

  • the use of near-infrared reflectance (NIR) technology to assess chlorophyll in canola;
  • the relationship of fusarium-damaged kernels to the level of deoxynivalenol (DON) found in those kernels for all classes of wheat;
  • the impact of merging the primary and export specifications for wheat; and
  • the use of Rapid Visco Analysis (RVA) technology to “rapidly” assess damage caused by sprouting in wheat.

The western committee also recommended further study of the impact of hard vitreous kernels (HVK) on the end-use quality of No. 1 Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS) wheat.

The eastern committee also called for more study on the impact of brown seed in canola on the end-use quality; whether there’s toxicity in soybeans affected by purple mottling; and the impact of mildew on end-use functionality for all classes of eastern wheat.

The eastern committee also recommended to the CGC that the 2008 Mildew Guide for No. 2 Canada Eastern Red (Winter) be adjusted to reflect “more mildew.”

The committee said its recommendation is based on studies of the impact of mildew on the end-use quality of eastern red winter wheat conducted by the CGC’s Grain Research Laboratory. New mildew guide samples are expected to be prepared and distributed for implementation July 1, and standard and guide samples would provide a visual definition of “degree of soundness” in the standard of quality for each grain, the committee said.

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