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UArk redoubles its efforts to select rice with 2 releases.

⋅ Vicky Boyd ⋅

The Department of Agriculture of the University of Arkansas has released rice varieties with long and medium grains, both with improved yield potential over previous varieties. In 2022, they will be exposed to seed growth in hopes of a limited commercial launch in the 2023 season, said Dr. Xueyang Sha, a senior rice breeder who developed the two.

Ozark is a traditional long-grain variety of normal height with improved yield potential compared to Diamond, the previous release of UA. Taurus is a true semi-dwarf medium grain variety with significantly improved yield potential compared to Jupiter, an older medium grain from the University of Louisiana breeding program.

These two releases mark the resumption of efforts by the University of Arkansas to bring quality rice to market.

“This is the first step – we will have a lot more, which will show even better profitability potential,” said Sha. “It just doubles our efforts.”


The cross between Diamond and LaKast, Ozark is a high-end Diamond-like variety. However, he said, Ozark survived a series of hurricanes and tropical storms in the fall of 2021 with minimal damage.

“Being higher doesn’t necessarily mean living,” Sha said. “When we survived the hurricane last year, this variety proved to be much better than the semi-dwarf. This tall one stood much better because the scabbard remained green and withstood the wind. ”

“Ground rice is very white, and boiled rice is very white,” Dr. Xueyang Sha said of Ozarka.
Vicki Boyd

In 2021, Arkansas Commercial Rice Trials, Ozark – tested as 20AR185 – yielded an average of 212 bushels per hectare in 11 locations. The yield of torment was 57-70. The average diamond production in the same 11 places was 202 bushels per hectare, with an average yield of 59-69.

Ozark has no genes for resistance to explosion and has a propensity to explode similar to Diamond. But this is not considered very sensitive, like Francis.

Agronomically, growers need to manage Ozark just like Diamond. But tests by University of Arkansas Extensive Plant Extension Eshi Wamishe found that the new variety exhibited slightly fewer false heads and slightly improved tolerability of narrow brown leaf spot. Estimates of disease for the shell and bacterial panicle were similar to Diamond.

He said the length of the Ozark core falls into the 7mm spot that millers and buyers are looking for. It also produces less chalk cores than diamond. With an amylose content of 23.5%, the new variety has a long-grain quality typical of the south. “Ground rice is very white, and boiled rice is very white,” Sha said.

He said he settled on the title of Ozark based on his previous breeding experience at LSU. There, rice breeder Steve Linscomb chose names like Cheniere and Pirogue that pay tribute to Louisiana. “We wanted to keep in touch with Arkansas,” Sha said of Ozarka.


Taurus is a true semi-dwarf ordinary medium grain, lower than Jupiter, Titan and Clearfield CLM04, which is also from the Sha breeding program. Over three years of performance testing in Arkansas, Rice Taurus has shown a significant yield advantage over Jupiter, Sha said.

In 11 locations in 2021, Taurus yielded an average of 220 bushels per hectare with an average yield of 62-71. Jupiter gave an average of 197 bushels per hectare at an average grinding rate of 65-69, while Titan gave an average of 203 bushels per hectare, with a winding average of 50-70.

Taurus is a new medium-grain with improved yield potential compared to Jupiter. This is from Dr. Xueyang Sha’s breeding program.
Photo courtesy of Dr. Xueyang Sha

The grain size of Taurus is similar to CLM04, but larger than that of Jupiter. Compared to Titan, the grain size of Taurus is slightly less. The variety gives cores with low chalk content that are very transparent.

The new average grain is three days earlier than Jupiter, but three days later than Titan. Like Titan, Taurus contains the Pi-ks and Pi-z genes for explosion resistance.

Over the past few years Sha has already sent 2-pound samples to Kellogg’s to find out about the suitability of the processor. So far, he said, they looked happy. The next step would be to send £ 1,000 so Kellogg’s could run them through pilot processing.

Sha said he decided to name the new variety Taurus to follow other recent medium grain releases in Arkansas named after constellations or planets. Read more – Rice Farming

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