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General Knowledge about Triticale

Triticale is a new cereal species. We differentiate between

Species: Amongst cereals the most important species are wheat, barley, rye, oats and others, for example triticale,

and the subordinate

Varieties: Improvements within the species by plant breeding.

For the first time man has created a new cereal – triticale – by crossing two species (wheat and rye), and so man gave the product its name by combining the names of the parents

Triticum (the Latin name for wheat) andSecale (the Latin name for rye)

to one word: Triticale.

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Wheat is the most important cereal worldwide. It has high requirements for soil and climate, and a high need of water. Wheat yields very high under appropriately favourable conditions.

The grain is rich in starch and protein. Wheat is the most important cereal for bread production, and considerably important for animal feeding.

Wheat has been cultivated by man since time immemorial. The most important sub-species are common wheat (soft wheat) which mainly is being used for making bread and hard wheat (durum wheat) which serves to produce semolina, noodles and specialities like bulgur and couscous.


Ear of Wheat

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As most other cereals, rye presumably originates from South West Asia. Cultivation by man started much later than that of wheat; first traces date back to 1,000 to 500 BC. Rye is extremely undemanding as to climate, soil and water supply, and is a very healthy and tough plant.

The grain is rich in starch and low in protein. It is used for making bred in Central and Eastern Europe; it is not as favourable for animal feeding as wheat.

The main production areas are Central and Eastern Europe; worldwide it ranges last amongst the main cereals.


Ear of Rye

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Triticale is a very young cereal species. The first successful cross between wheat and rye which is known, was made at the end of the 19th century, but it took more than 100 years for the breakthrough. You find more details under Hystory .

To make clear: Triticale is the cross of wheat as mother plant and rye as pollinator. The reversed cross also has been tried (rye as mother plant and wheat as pollinator). The product – called Secalotricum – has had no success so far.


Ear of Triticale

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You find more details under Triticale Breeding .

The scientists and breeders who have developed triticale, had been inspired by the idea to combine the advantages of wheat (with the highest yield potential of all cereals and the best nutritional value) with the advantages of rye (undemanding and robust nature and excellent resistances) in one plant. Have these aims been reached so far? Well, wheat and rye gave their best! Please read more under Cultivation and Use .

Triticale is GMO free!

Triticale has been developed by the use of classical plant breeding – without using genetic engineering! As with most important crop, some companies have tried GMO techniques and introduce foreign genes into triticale - but without success, at least so far.

To continue, click: Triticale Breeding

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