Small grains have continually been dealt with ever since the establishment of Experimental and Control Agricultural Station in 1938 (today Institute of Field and Vegetable Crops). At first, there was gathering of local and foreign cultivars and populations, and analysing seed quality followed by breeding and cultivation practices at a later date. The first small grains collection from this period comprised several hundred genotypes and was later utilized as an excellent basis for breeding purposes.
Today, Small Grains Department is one the organizational units of the Institute, with a strategic goal in developing new superior small grains cultivars fit for domestic and foreign markets. The following plant species and sub-species are bred:
- wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) winter and spring cultivars
- durum wheat (Triticum durum L.) winter and spring cultivars
- spelt wheat (Triticum spelta L.) winter cultivars
- triticale (Triticosecale W.) winter cultivars
- barley (Hordeum vulgare) winter and spring cultivars
- oat (Avena sativa) spring cultivars
There are 50 full-time and 6 part-time employees at Small Grians Department, 22 of which conduct basic and applied research.
Until now, Small Grains Department has developed 229 winter and 31 spring bread wheat cultivars; 2 spring and 2 winter durum wheat cultivars; 46 winter and 41 spring barley cultivars; 11 winter triticale cultivars; 4 winter and 4 spring oat cultivars, and one cultivar of rye, spelt and compactum wheat. Total of 48 small grains cultivars developed in Small Grains Department have been released in 14 foreign countries.