Peanut varieties coming out of the University of Georgia breeding program are focused on increased dollar value, yield, grade, multiple-disease resistance, improved shelling characteristics, longer shelf-life and enhanced flavor, says Bill Branch, peanut breeder.

“Peanut breeding is a long-term commitment which normally takes 10 years to develop a new variety,” Branch says. Recently, the University of Georgia Peanut Breeding Program has released seven new varieties.

Released in 1995, Georgia Green has very good resistance to tomato spotted wilt virus. It is highly productive and performs well in many different environments. It has TSWV resistance comparable to Florida MDR 98, C-99R, ViruGard and Southern Runner. Under heavy TSWV pressure in 2002, it had the highest yield, grade and dollar values than all other runner-type peanut varieties.

Georgia Hi-O/L is a large-seeded variety released in 1999 that combines the high-oleic trait with high yield and TSWV resistance. It has high oleic and low linoleic fatty acid ratio for improved oil quality and also has a good level of resistance to TSWV.

Georgia-01R, a multiple pest resistance runner, was released in 2001. It has shown good resistance to TSWV, early and late leafspot, stem rot, Cylindrocladium black rot (CBR) and leafhoppers. It is in the late-maturity group of peanut varieties. Under recommended or reduced pesticide scenarios, Georgia-01R had higher yields, grade and dollar value return per acre than C-99R, DP-1 and Hull.

Georgia-02C is a new high-oleic runner released in 2002. It has similar maturity as Georgia Green, with slightly larger seed and pod size. It has the high-oleic characteristic and spreading growth habit similar to the AgraTech 201 variety. Georgia-02C also has excellent resistance to TSWV and CBR.

Georgia Browne was developed for the confectionary market in 1993. It has pod and seed size similar to Spanish types. In test over the past 10 years, the variety has outperformed leading Spanish types in yield, grade and dollar value per acre.

Georgia Valencia and Georgia Red are Valencia-type varieties for the fresh market.

Both varieties offer high yields, large-fruit size and compact bunch growth habit. Over the past seven years, Georgia Valencia and Georgia Red have had higher yields, grades and dollar values compared to Valencia McRan, New Mexico Valencia C and New Mexico Valencia A. Georgia Valencia and Georgia Red also have better disease tolerance than the other Valencia varieties.

cyancy@primediabusiness.com