Salt Tolerant Cereal


The Salt Tolerant Cereal project followed on from research conducted by the former CRC Salinity to develop a feed quality cereal for salt-affected land, with funding from GRDC. It provided new knowledge on the salt and waterlogging tolerances of these materials under field, glasshouse and laboratory conditions.

The so-called ‘salt-tolerant cereal’ is an amphiploid — a new synthetic plant containing the full genomes from two parent plant species — in this case commercial wheat and sea barleygrass, a highly salt– and waterlogging–tolerant wild relative in the Triticeae (the same Tribe as wheat). The CRC project produced a number of amphiploids and other cytogenetic stocks, via work by AKMR Islam at University of Adelaide, and the team tested 20 of these amphiploids.

Field and laboratory results initially showed promise and elucidated mechanisms of tolerance, but the amphiploids were found to have low fertility, so that direct use as a crop was not commercially viable. Further research could overcome this barrier, however due to the time limitations of the CRC and the likely time such research would take, the CRC did not continue to fund the development of this salt-tolerant cereal. Potentially valuable pre-breeding materials were produced.

The Salt Tolerant Cereal project identified some mechanisms used by plants to cope with saline and waterlogged environments, with findings communicated in a number of scientific journal papers.


Dr Tim Colmer, UWA 


Further Information


Future Farm Industries Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) ceased trading on 30 June 2014.

This website contains information about the CRC’s research into perennial plant based farming systems.

This site will remain live until 30 June 2017 but is no longer being updated or reviewed.

Further information about CRC research projects can be obtained by following links from relevant project pages or by viewing the research transfer page.

The CRC was funded for seven years (2007-2014) under the Australian Government Cooperative Research Centre program.