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  • Grass Feeds Research Considered a UK Best Breakthrough

Grass Feeds Research Considered a UK Best Breakthrough

Feb 28 2019 Read 1469 Times

New varieties of high sugar grasses produced through pioneering work at the University of Aberystwyth have been listed as one of the UK’s 100 best breakthroughs in recognition of its transformational environmental and economic benefits.

Featured in the ‘UK’s Best Breakthroughs list: 100+ Ways Universities Have Improved Everyday Life’ compiled by umbrella group Universities UK, the list forms part of the MadeAtUni campaign to change public perceptions of universities and bring to life the difference they make to people, lives and communities across the UK.

The development of Aber High Sugar Grasses (AberHSG) for animal feeds, which reduce gas emissions while also increasing yield from livestock, is being carried out at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS), which celebrates 100 years of plant breeding in 2019, in close collaboration with industry partner Germinal.

The development is just one example of how the University’s scientists are combining fundamental research on plant genetics with plant breeding techniques to develop new commercially viable plant varieties that are designed to tackle the global challenges of food, water and energy security.

Today almost a third of the perennial ryegrass grown by UK farmers comes from seed developed by Aberystwyth University researchers, with varieties including AberMagic, AberDart and AberGreen also used internationally.

Professor Chris Thomas, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research, Knowledge Exchange and Innovation at Aberystwyth University said: “We are delighted that the innovative work of our scientists has been recognised by inclusion in the UK’s Best Breakthrough list. The ground-breaking research conducted by our academics makes a real difference to people, lives and communities, and the MadeAtUni campaign allows students, alumni, the local community and the wider population to understand the work that we do and the impact it has.”

Professor Dame Janet Beer, President of Universities UK, said: “Universities really do transform lives. The technology we use every day, the medicines that save lives, the teachers who inspire – all come from UK universities and the important work being done by academics.

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