Assessment of impact of changes in crop growth and development on the grain quality of wheat, with particular reference to Chopin alveograph


Cereals & Oilseeds
Project code:
01 January 1997 - 31 May 1997
AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds.
AHDB sector cost:
£25,215 From HGCA (Project No. 0070/1/96)
Project leader:
J B South and J Spink ADAS Rosemaund S Salmon, CCFRA Chipping Campden



About this project


Wheat samples were obtained from a number of ADAS experiments in which a range of agronomic and environmental factors were examined, including variety, site, rotational position, nitrogen, sowing date, seed rate, application of plant growth regulator, water availability and shading. Grain samples were analysed for total protein, Hagberg Falling Number (HFN), sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) and Zeleny sedimentation volumes, and Alveograph characteristics (configuration ratio, P/L and deformation energy, W). Yield, thousand grain weight (TGW) and specific weight (SpWt) were obtained from existing data.

Data were analysed statistically to identify agronomic and environmental factors influencing grain quality. Yield, TGW and SpWt responded to the experimental treatments as expected based on previous agronomic experience. Alveograph characteristics were influenced by variety, site nitrogen and water availability. Nitrogen application resulted in higher W values and lower P/L ratios at lower levels, suggesting an improvement in bread-making quality, but with little effect at application rates in excess of optimal nitrogen rates for yield. Drought resulted in increases in both P/L and W in all varieties, although there was some evidence of varietal differences in response. Changes in P/L ratio due to drought and nitrogen were different, nitrogen mainly affecting dough extensibility (L) whereas drought mainly affected dough strength (P). It was evident from these results that Alveograph characteristics were affected by changes in both amount and composition of grain protein, as affected by agronomic treatment and crop environment. Variety, site, nitrogen and water availability were the main factors affecting HFN, SDS and Zeleny volumes, with drought and higher applied nitrogen rates suggesting improvements in bread-making quality.