Research Project

Influence of Genotype, weather and the growing environment, and crop management on gluten strength and the sustainability of CWRS as a premium wheat class in the prairie region

AWC contribution: $120,000

Start date: April 1, 2015

End date: March 31, 2019


This research is examining the dependence of key physical and biochemical factors underlying CWRS wheat processing quality for breadmaking as a function of genotype (G), the crop growing environment (E) and G x E interactions. The focus of the study is gluten strength as reflected by specific dough technological properties and content and composition of gluten storage proteins, most notably the high molecular weight fraction of polymeric glutenin which is the main wheat component underlying both intrinsic differences in dough strength and breadmaking quality among different genotypes, and flour samples in general.

Benefit to producers:

Improved understanding of the nature of wheat quality variation across the Prairies and ability for producers and the value chain in general to meet customer requirements for quality bread products


Harry Sapirstein is Associate Professor, Department of Food Science, University of Manitoba.  He has a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture (University of Alberta) and a Ph.D. in Cereal Chemistry from the University of Manitoba. His research has spanned topics such as wheat variety identification using biochemical fingerprints, digital image analysis for quality control of grain and bread, processing wheat bran to enhance bioactivity, composition and functionality of gluten proteins and the physicochemical nature of wheat end-use quality. He is a longstanding member of the Quality Evaluation Team of the Prairie Recommending Committee for Wheat, Rye and Triticale which is responsible for evaluating merit of advanced breeding lines and recommending candidate cultivars for registration in the Prairie region of Western Canada.

Paul Bullock is Professor and Head, Department of Soil Science, University of Manitoba.  He has a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and a M.Sc. in Soil Science from the University of Saskatchewan and a Ph.D. from the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, Australian National University.  Prior to joining the University of Manitoba, Dr. Bullock had several years experience in global operational crop yield forecasting at the Weather and Crop Surveillance department of the Canadian Wheat Board as well as remote sensing application development with Noetix Research Inc.  His research covers a range of topics in agrometeorology including modeling weather impacts on crops, assessment of weather-based production risk and soil moisture modeling and measurement techniques.