WinField United Licenses Chinook, New U of I Winter Canola With Herbicide Resistance
February 25, 2021
MOSCOW, Idaho — Feb. 24, 2021 — A Midwest-based company recently licensed a new, herbicide-resistant winter canola variety developed by retired University of Idaho plant breeder Jack Brown and colleagues as a new crop option for wheat growers.
The University of Idaho Office of Technology Transfer registered the new Chinook winter canola as a federal Plant Protected Variety in 2020 and trademarked G2FlexTM, the herbicide-resistance technology included in the new variety. Seed distributor WinField United obtained an exclusive license to market Chinook seed to farmers.
“This high-yielding, extremely winter hardy variety from the University of Idaho’s breeding program looks to gain a lot of market share in 2021,” said Mick Miller, WinField CROPLAN winter canola product manager in Montana. “The growth potential for acres in the north allows great placement of CP1022WC in Montana, North Dakota, Washington, Idaho and Oregon.”
Wheat growers increasingly use wheat varieties resistant to herbicides that can control grassy weeds that reduce crop yields. Those same Group 2 herbicides limited the use of canola in crop rotations because residual herbicides in the soil damaged its growth.
The new variety, which will be marketed by WinField United as CROPLAN CP1022WC, incorporates a genetic trait with resistance to multiple Group 2 herbicides most commonly used with the new wheat varieties.
Like the new wheats, Chinook winter canola uses an herbicide resistance trait developed through conventional plant breeding methods and does not rely on genetic engineering and so is not considered a genetically modified organism, Brown said.
The new variety becomes the first winter canola available to farmers with the herbicide resistance trait, Brown said. He led the U of I College of Agricultural and Life Sciences oilseed breeding program for more than two decades before retiring in 2020.
Other winter canola varieties on the market with herbicide resistance are considered GMOs, Brown said. That means Chinook, which offers excellent oil qualities, appeals to an important market niche.
“The U of I Chinook oilseed variety will open new doors for wheat farmers needing an herbicide-resistant canola in their crop rotation, since it incorporates G2Flex™ technology,” said Jeremy Tamsen, U of I Office of Technology Transfer director.“Without the license agreement, Winfield customers would be unable to purchase this new variety through commercial seed retailers.”
Science writer, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 11,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky and Western Athletic conferences. Learn more at uidaho.edu.