Kansas State University Unveils New Wheat Varieties, Honors Coach Bill Snyder

By Trish Svoboda

The Kansas State University wheat breeding program has unveiled two new wheat varieties, which are now licensed by the Kansas Wheat Alliance seed associates for autumn planting. The Hard Red Winter wheat variety, KS Bill Snyder, named in honor of the renowned football coach, will be accessible in a limited quantity this autumn. This variety was developed with the financial support of Kansas wheat farmers and contributors to the Kansas Wheat Commission Research Foundation. Another Hard Red Winter variety, KS Mako, known for its outstanding yield record, is set to make a significant impact in seed fields this summer and will be ready for farmers by this fall.

A luncheon was held in Manhattan on March 14 to pay tribute to Coach Bill Snyder. A select group of wheat farmers, seed cultivators, and industry experts were present to listen to the retired football coach from K-State. Remarks were also given by Marty Vanier, whose family was the primary contributor to the Research Foundation’s Fields Forward Campaign, and ex-Senator Pat Roberts. Vanier enumerated Snyder’s 16 success goals and explained how each goal is in sync with the wheat breeding program.

Roberts said, “This combines two of my favorite things in the world — Kansas agriculture and Coach Bill Snyder.” He continued, telling attendees that the naming of the wheat variety KS Bill Snyder brings a new level of excitement to a new generation of agriculture students. “Stakes are high in ag research,” he said. “We need a stable and affordable food system, and Kansas Wheat is rising to this challenge by honoring Bill Snyder.”

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