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Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Sorghum and Millet

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Feed the Future

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Sorghum and Millet Innovation Lab

Kansas State University
148 Waters Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506


Sorghum Trait Deployment Pipeline for Improved Food and Feed Value

Lead institution: Purdue University
Award amount: $408,349
Focus country: Niger, Senegal

Data collection

Principal investigator: Dr. Mitchell Tuinstra
U.S. collaborating institution: Purdue University
International collaborating institutions: Senegal - Institut de Technologie Alimentaire (ITA), CERAAS, ISRA, CNRA; Niger - INRAN

This proposed project expands the team’s sorghum crop improvement efforts through targeted research and technology transfer to promote and enhance sorghum production and nutritional value. Researchers have already identified allelic variation in genes that influence grain and forage quality; specifically grain protein digestibility, modified starches that produce new functional food and nutritional attributes, and improved forage quality.

The Protein Digestibility Lab established in Senegal will serve as a hub of activity in West Africa for efforts to develop sorghum cultivars with improved post-cooking protein digestibility. As new varieties are developed, ISRA will engage with sorghum farmers and end-users to evaluate the bread-making and couscous-making qualities of grain produced using these varieties as well as their feed value in poultry rations.

A Forage Sorghum Breeding Program will be established at the INRAN Kollo Research Station. The bmr6 and bmr12 alleles will be used to develop new forage varieties in the El Mota and SEPON82 backgrounds. Hybrid forage varieties will be developed using locally-adapted seed and pollinator parents. AN223 and selected A-lines from the breeding program will be crossed with elite forage and Sudangrass pollinators being developed at Purdue.

The crop development activities described in this proposal will produce new and unique sorghum varieties and hybrids with enhanced food- and feed-quality traits. Farmer participation during evaluation and selection of the best new varieties will promote acceptance and production of new cultivars. Researchers will also work with seed system specialists to encourage and enable seed production and distribution. Increased production and availability of high-quality seeds and grains will stimulate and support the development of new markets.

For more information about the project, contact:

Dr. Mitchell Tuinstra, Professor
Purdue University
Lilly 2-339 - Department of Agronomy
West Lafayette, IN 47907