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Determination of free Asparagine, a precursor to Acrylamide in Western Canadian Wheat

Crop Types
  • Wheat
Collaborating Locations


By evaluating the response of Canadian wheats grown in Western Canada to specific nitrogen and sulfur agronomic management strategies, western Canadian producers will be able to demonstrate that they are utilizing best management practices to reduce creation of the acrylamide precursor.

By targeting the genetic precursors of acrylamide through breeding programs, Canada’s wheat industry will demonstrate serious intent to reduce food safety risks in its domestic and export supply.


  1. Determine the effects of variety and nutrient availability on the acrylamide-forming potential of Canadian wheat;
  2. Ascertain whether addressing this food safety focus will have unintended consequences on breadmaking quality;
  3. Understand the genetic basis for the development of free asparagine in wheat and to address it proactively by identifying wheat cultivars with low asparagine potential.

Key Findings

Growing wheat varieties in suitable environments, along with the selection of wheat varieties with lower potential for free asparagine formation, are the most effective strategies to control free asparagine levels in Canadian wheat.

  • Cultivar, and location affected asparagine concentration of Canadian HRS wheat.
  • Two cultivars of wheat with low asparagine accumulating potential were identified.
  • N and S did not significantly affect asparagine concentration of the wheat kernel
  • Project Details

    Principal Investigator
    Dr. Martin Scanlon
    Project Status
    Start Date
    Completion Date
    Funding Partners
    AWC, SWDC, Warburtons, FP Genetics, SeCan, MB Agriculture
    Total Project Cost
    MCA Funding

    Field Issues

    • Other