Спасибо, Санкт-Петербург! Thank you, St. Petersburg!

Thank you so much to Igor Loskutov and the rest of the organizers of the 10th International Oat Conference for hosting such a great meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, last month! Over time, more information concerning what took place will be added to the newsletter. In the meantime, if you have photos or other information to add, please get in touch with me. If you wish to have a say in the choice of the next venue, please go to the IOC page under the “Meetings” section and read the information there.

In this latest update of the newsletter, we have two new reports concerning T3/Oat from Clare Saied in the “Research Reports” section. There are also "Community News” stories from Åsmund Bjørnstad and Chris Green in which they ask for your help, so please ensure you read those. Åsmund is tracking down oat lines developed by Ken Frey, and Chris has initiated a survey about opportunities and threats to the oat community. A separate story about Chris appears in the “Other Awards” section of the “Hall of Fame” – it is now legal for him to transport sheep across the Thames River!

In other news from Britain, new projects to develop mycotoxin resistance in oats have been initiated by Dhan Bhandari at ADHB and Simon Edwards of Harper Adams University.

In the USA, a state-of-the-art oat variety development lab sponsored by General Mills has been opened on the Brookings campus of South Dakota State University, where Melanie Caffé-Treml has her oat breeding program. Articles can be found here, here, and here.

In Canada, Prairie Oat Growers Association (POGA) president Art Enns was mentioned in the Winnipeg Free Press recently when he donated the proceeds from his oat crop to two schools in Zambia.

In the August issue of POGA’s own “Oat Scoop” newsletter, there are many stories of interest, including a discussion of the use of glyphosate as a dessicant and an interview with AAFC oat breeder Jennifer Mitchell Fetch.

Weikai Yan’s breeding program at ORDC, AAFC, was also in the news recently after journalist Lyndsey Smith took part in the annual Oat Tour.

In other AAFC news, the “Growing Forward 2” initiative is investing C$500,000 in a project with the Canadian Celiac Association to “help increase awareness and enhance access to Canadian sources of gluten-free grains”, including oats. Some lovely gluten-free profiteroles made with modified oat flour were served at the conference in Russia.  They were produced by Sofiya Sergeeva and Vitaly Popov of Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University.

It was also announced at the conference that Saaten-Union GmbH has released a new edition of their publication “Oats – Breaking New Ground”. It features Steffen Beuch from Germany, amongst others.

Finally, in Australia, Bruce Winter and Richard Uebergang of the Leslie Research Centre, DAF, have released their new forage oat, ‘Wizard’. It was launched at a special ceremony by Queensland Agriculture minister Leanne Donaldson.

Seeing oat breeders and others in the news is good for our community. Please express your opinions about other strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats by responding to Chris Green’s survey! Thank you!