Development​ of rapeseed varieties with new characteristics

Better use of oilseed rape (Brassica napus)

Oilseed rape varieties with new traits

Knold & Top is breeding white flowering winter oilseed rape. The white or crème color of the flower is linked to a milder taste of the whole plant. This forms the basis for new uses of oilseed rape.

For instance, cold crushed unrefined oil from ‘white’ oilseed rape has a milder taste as compared to oil from normal yellow flowering oilseed rape. Such oil, when carefully crushed, turns into tasty gourmet oil. The seeds themselves are also excellent as a mild and crunchy ingredient in breads. A ‘Novel Food’ application for this use of rapeseeds became submitted at EFSA in 2018.

Furthermore, the green parts of ‘white’ oilseed rape are now used as salads, particularly baby leaf salad. Those are without the bitter taste that very often occurs in leaves from yellow flowering varieties.

Finally, the bright flower color makes it possible to reduce the use of insecticides by using a white flowering variety as main crop surrounded by a yellow flowering trap crop. The trap crop picks up many pollen beetles and seedpod weevils.

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