Breeding of Improved Non-GMO Cultivars and Germplasm
Sustainable Production
Parent Project:
This is the first year of this project.
Lead Principal Investigator:
Ted Helms, North Dakota State University
Co-Principal Investigators:
Berlin Nelson, North Dakota State University
Project Code:
Contributing Organization (Checkoff):
Institution Funded:
Brief Project Summary:

Due to the increase in glyphosate-resistant weeds, such as Kochia, Water Hemp, Ragweed, and Lambsquarter, many growers must apply additional herbicides plus glyphosate to their fields where they grow Roundup Ready@ cultivars. Application of these expensive herbicides, plus the additional purchase of expensive Roundup Ready@ seed has greatly increased production costs. Growers need to have the option of growing non-GMO varieties to save input costs. This project would provide soybean farmers with improved non-GMO cultivars that have been developed by NDSU. Also, growers need information that enables them to select the best private company variety for their farm and to identify which...

Unique Keywords:
#breeding & genetics
Information And Results
Final Project Results


View uploaded report Word file

July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017 Annual Report: Breeding of Improved Non-GMO Cultivars and Germplasm

Principal Investigator: Dr. Ted Helms, Department of Plant Sciences, North Dakota State University – Cooperating Scientists: Dr. Berlin Nelson, Department of Plant Pathology, North Dakota State University

The NDSU breeding program provides growers with the option of growing non-GMO varieties. As glyphosate-resistant weeds, such as Kochia and Water Hemp become more common, growers may benefit from growing non-GMO varieties because they can use herbicides with various modes of action and pay lower seed costs. Growers have the option of purchasing non-GMO varieties that have been developed by North Dakota State University without paying a ‘technology fee’ and can then save their own seed.

This research had four broad objectives which included: i) provide soybean growers in North Dakota with cultivars which are genetically superior to cultivars that are currently grown; ii) collection of grain samples from the Variety Fee Tests and reporting the protein and oil data in the NDSU Soybean Performance bulletin; iii) to increase yield on IDC-prone soils and increase profit on those problem soils; iv) to enable private companies and growers to compare yield of SCN-resistant cultivars on sites that are infested with SCN.

Two new non-GMO varieties were released in January of 2017. ‘ND Stutsman’ is a 0.7 maturity variety with high-yield, good IDC tolerance, resistance to race 3 of phytopthora root rot and resistant to lodging. ‘ND Benson’ is a 0.4 maturity variety with good IDC tolerance, resistance to races 3 & 4 of phytophthora root rot, lodging resistant and highly resistant to SCN.

In 2016, grain samples for protein and oil analyses were collected for all company varieties entered in the LaMoure, Northwood, Grandin, Fairmount, Walcott, and Milnor, ND testing sites. These samples were analyzed and the data was reported in the ‘North Dakota Soybean Performance Bulletin (A-843)’.

In 2016, yield data was collected on 40 private company RR varieties at three sites that had IDC symptoms. Averaged across the Leonard, Colfax and Erie, ND locations for 2016, the range of yield varied from a low of 43.7 bu/A for an IDC susceptible company variety to a high of 71.4 bu/A for an IDC tolerant company variety. Also, four sites that were infested with Soybean Cyst Nematode (SCN) were planted with 40 Roundup Ready company varieties to test for SCN resistance. Data from the Galesburg and Wyndmere, ND sites was published in the ‘North Dakota Soybean Performance Bulletin (A-843) and also online. The yield data from the SCN-infested sites of Absaraka and Prosper, ND was not usable, due to excessive rainfall events in the 2016 growing season.

Growers benefit when there are non-GMO varieties that give them a choice between buying new seed each year and being able to save the seed of non-GMO varieties to plant next year. The non-GMO varieties developed by NDSU provide growers with an alternative to the use of glyphosate and permit different herbicides to be rotated in soybean fields across different years.

The United Soybean Research Retention policy will display final reports with the project once completed but working files will be purged after three years. And financial information after seven years. All pertinent information is in the final report or if you want more information, please contact the project lead at your state soybean organization or principal investigator listed on the project.