Recommended Lists protocols

The AHDB Recommended Lists for cereals and oilseeds 2016–2021 (RL) project provides independent information about the performance of varieties. The project is the largest research investment by AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds. Produced each year, the RL publication is based on the analysis of hundreds of UK trials conducted across several years.

The documents on these pages explain how the RL project is managed. It covers information on the trials and the decision-making process, including the reasons for adding and removing varieties from RL.

0 – Crop Committee handbook (2019)

1 – Cereal trials protocol

A1 - Fungicide protocol for AHDB Recommended List cereal trials

A2 - Plant growth regulator protocol for AHDB Recommended List cereal variety trials

2 – Winter oilseed rape trials protocol

A1 - Fungicide and early insecticide protocol for AHDB Recommended List winter oilseed rape trials

3 – Early sown winter wheat trials protocol

4 – Spring linseed trials protocol

5 – Spring oilseed rape trials protocol

6 – Inoculated disease tests for cereals and winter oilseed rape protocol

7 – Special plots: Growth and development protocol

8 – Special plots: Assessment of winter wheat sterility (infertility) and shedding protocol

9 – Special plots: Spring barley high nitrogen plots for the production of grain for grain distilling tests protocol

10 – Special plots: Production of winter wheat and spring wheat grain samples for milling and baking tests protocol

11 – Winter barley and spring barley ear loss assessment plots protocol

12 – Assessment of sprouting in winter wheat and spring wheat varieties protocol

13 – Assessment of the vernalisation requirements of winter wheat and winter barley varieties protocol

14 – Market suitability predictive quality tests for cereals (except oats) and oil content of oilseed rape protocol

15 – Market suitability predictive quality tests for winter oats and spring oats

16 – Cereal trials sampling protocol

Disease assessments

With a focus on yellow rust and septoria tritici in wheat, this video shows how disease severity is assessed in RL trials using a standardised scale (0 to 100 per cent)

Ramularia leaf spot in barley

SRUC’s Neil Havis explains how to tell ramularia leaf spot lesions apart from other foliar symptoms and how to score symptom severity.


The UK Cereal Pathogen Virulence Survey (UKCPVS) tests pathogen isolates to check their virulence against wheat and barley varieties. The testing can detect new races of cereal pathogens capable of causing disease on previously resistant cereal varieties.

Relative risk

A subtle change supporting in the criteria used to create the AHDB Recommended List will benefit growers. CPM finds out why.

Risk rating for new varieties (CPM article, June 2016)

Germplasm journey

While the Recommended Lists represent the most significant part of AHDB activity on varieties, the lifeblood of new lines lies in breeding and pre-breeding research. CPM tracks its history and prospects.

Germplasm journey (CPM article, November 2015)

The Genetic Improvement Networks have revolutionised plant breeding in the UK. CPM reports on the achievements of the GINs and how they will contribute to the varieties of the future.

GINs provide shot in the arm (CPM article, July 2017)

RL Extranet

AHDB RL Extranet (private area)