Based on the full Recommended Lists for cereals and oilseeds (RL), AHDB’s new app provides a powerful and pint-sized way to deliver variety data to farmers’ fingertips. Charlotte Cunningham reports.
The app, which replaces the physical pocketbooks, delivers at-a-glance information for recommended, described and candidate varieties.
Developed in response to conclusions from a review of the RL in 2018, the app aims to help satisfy the hunger for variety data in digital forms.
“One of the strongest features of the RL app is that we can get updates to people rapidly,” says Paul Gosling, who manages the RL at AHDB. “For example, once a variety gets on the National List, we can release the associated candidate data straight away. The days when people needed to check the RL web pages regularly for changes have gone.”
With independent information on yield and quality performance, agronomic features and market options, the RL powers the UK’s variety decisions. Adding value to the online tables and physical booklet, the RL app:
- Covers recommended, described and candidate varieties
- Is free to download (iOS and Android devices)
- Works offline
- Has clearly designed menus and tables
- Features a powerful inbuilt search function
- Includes ‘favourites’ and ‘notes’ functions
- Provides automatic updates
“We developed the app to give a similar experience to the pocketbooks. With coronavirus causing the cancellation of most variety open days in 2020, our RL app will continue to deliver RL data – no matter where you happen to be this summer,” adds Paul.
Growing digital solutions
The app, which can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play, adds to a suite of growing digital solutions from the RL team – including the variety selection tool.
Currently based on cereals – winter wheat, winter barley, spring barley, winter oats and spring oats – the variety selection tool provides a dynamic and visual way to sift through varieties and pinpoint those most suited to specific situations. In summer, the tool will extend to cover winter OSR.
From July, the AHDB Harvest Results service will return to provide an indication of how cereal and oilseed varieties have performed in RL trials this year. Regular email updates, throughout the harvest period, provide information on yield, grain quality and agronomic data, as well as information on disease levels.
Access complete RL information, including RL booklet ordering details, via ahdb.org.uk/rl