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High-yielding spring barley SY Tennyson has gained full approval for malt distilling in a boost for growers, says breeder Syngenta. The new variety continues... Spring barley gains full approval for malt distilling

High-yielding spring barley SY Tennyson has gained full approval for malt distilling in a boost for growers, says breeder Syngenta.

The new variety continues to progress through the approval process for brewing on the Malting Barley Committee list for harvest 2025, says Syngenta seeds portfolio marketing manager Kathryn Hamlen.

“End users have wanted another dual purpose spring malting barley variety to use alongside the popular spring variety Laureate for some time. This is a perfect opportunity for SY Tennyson, which offers benefits to growers and end users alike.”

For distillers, Tennyson has the highest predicted spirit yield figure on the 2024 AHDB Spring Barley Recommended List at 436.8 litres of alcohol per tonne. High spirit yield is a key requirement for malt distilling.

“In addition, it also has the highest hot water extract figure on the 2024 AHDB RL. Hot water extract is important for brewing. Ms Hamlen says: “We hope it will gain full approval for brewing in the not-too-distant future as well.”

Meanwhile, winter barley SY Vessel continues to progress through the approval process for malt distilling. The non-GN variety is the only winter barley with potential for malt distilling on the MBC approved list.

“Clearly, spring barley dominates the market for distilling,” says Ms Halmen. “But having a winter malting barley variety with potential for malt distilling offers both growers and end users flexibility and a way of managing risk.”

Full or provisional approval to a variety does not guarantee that a variety will be accepted by all malting, brewing and distilling companies. As a result, growers should seek full details from customers before drilling newly listed varieties.