Oat Variety Trial under Organic Management: Increasing Profitability for Organic Producers in the North Central Region

Project Overview

Project Type: Partnership
Funds awarded in 2017: $30,000.00
Projected End Date: 03/14/2019
Grant Recipient: South Dakota State University
Region: North Central
State: South Dakota
Project Coordinator:
Dr. Melanie Caffe-Treml
South Dakota State University

Information Products


  • Agronomic: oats


  • Education and Training: on-farm/ranch research
  • Production Systems: general crop production


    Choosing the right oat variety can have a major impact on revenue per acre as it will affect the productivity and marketability of the grain produced.  Because chemicals are not used to control weed and pests in organic farming, the choice of variety constitutes an even more important farm management decision than for conventional farming systems. Although oat variety recommendations are available for conventional management system from several public variety testing programs, very limited information on variety performance under an organic production system is available. To guide organic farmers when making variety selection decisions, our goal was to evaluate and compare the performance of twenty oat varieties by performing variety trials at organic farms located in three states within the North Central Region during two growing seasons.

    Project objectives:

    Our objectives were to:

    1) Identify oat varieties that will provide the best profitability for organic producers in the North Central region.

    2) Identify oat varieties that exhibit good end-use quality so that organic grain produced meets market requirements.

    3) Identify oat varieties that can compete with weeds.

    4) Communicate results with growers throughout the region by publishing results on extension websites of three universities, presenting at field days in the three states, and presenting at one regional meeting/conference.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.