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Is deoxynivalenol contamination a serious problem for oat in eastern Canada?

Yan, W., Pageau, D., Martin, R., Cummiskey, A., Blackwell, B. (2017). Is deoxynivalenol contamination a serious problem for oat in eastern Canada?, 57(1), 88-98.


© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, as represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. To assess the severity of deoxynivalenol (DON) contamination in oat (Avena sativa L.) grain from infection of Fusarium head blight in eastern Canada, DON were determined for 3243 oat grain samples, involving 160 oat genotypes tested in 87 year–location combinations in Quebec and Atlantic Canada (Maritimes) oat registration and recommendation trials from 2008 to 2015. Analysis of the data led to the following findings. First, there are repeatable genetic differences in DON contamination. Relatively resistant cultivars (e.g., ‘CDC Dancer’) and susceptible cultivars (e.g., ‘AC Rigodon’) were identified. Genotypes better than CDC Dancer or worse than AC Rigodon were also identified. Second, cultivars with less DON contamination tended to have thinner hulls, i.e., greater groat percentage. Third, oat grain produced in Quebec and Maritimes was generally safe for use as feed or food, according to the Canadian permissible DON limits. In about 16% of the trials, however, the grain may not be suitable for making infant food according to the EU limit. Using a resistant cultivar such as CDC Dancer can reduce this risk to 10%, while using a susceptible cultivar such as AC Rigodon can increase the risk to 21%. Breeding for Fusarium head blight resistance, as measured by less DON contamination, should be a component in oat breeding for the region.

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