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Varietal and environmental effects on the production of faba bean (Vicia faba L.) seeds for the food industry by confrontation of agricultural and nutritional traits with resistance against Bruchus spp. (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae, Bruchinae)
Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment  (IF5.567),  Pub Date : 2021-12-30, DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2021.107831
Arnaud Segers, Lionel Dumoulin, Rudy Caparros Megido, Nicolas Jacquet, Christine Cartrysse, Paul Malumba Kamba, Jerôme Pierreux, Aurore Richel, Christophe Blecker, Frédéric Francis

Faba bean is a globally produced agricultural crop due to the high protein content in seeds. However, yields strongly vary depending on biotic and abiotic factors. Here, we evaluated the combined effect of faba bean varieties and climate on crop productivity, seed quality and Bruchus spp. infestation to identify most promising faba bean varieties for use in the food industry as local protein source. Varietal and year related factors were studied during two cropping years to explain variation of field yield, seed protein/ash/lipid content, protein production, and infestation rates. Fourteen varieties including nine winter varieties and five spring varieties were compared, from which one variety presented stable and promising yield, seed composition and low infestation rates. Annual effects significantly impacted field yield and protein production in contrast with the varietal effect that significantly impacted seeds protein content and infestation rates. Principal components analysis showed that infestation rate and yield were not correlated; thus, these two parameters could be optimized independently. The spring variety Fanfare exhibited the best and most stable results over the two study periods. Winter varieties had higher yields, whereas spring varieties had higher seed protein content. The main parameters impacting bruchid infestations were variety, indicating the need to select certain varieties that reduce the impact of pests on seed quality. During 2020, a drought during growing season significantly impacted faba bean production, demonstrating the importance of developing drought-resistant varieties. Thus, fourteen faba bean varieties were characterized considering together key parameters for food uses, and were ranked to identify most interesting ones. We also highlighted most impacting parameters that should be taken into account for the future improvement of varietal resilience in European countries.