Develop novel approaches to improve the quality of starch crops

Starch granule size, shape and polymer composition are all known to affect the physico-chemical behaviour of starch during cooking and processing.

We are examining how our new knowledge can be used to modify starch properties in the plant to improve quality for different end uses.

Using our new knowledge of granule initiation in wheat, we have generated huge, novel variation in starch granule shape and size within this important crop. We are now working with the food industry and plant breeders to test the potential benefits of our novel wheat starches in specific applications.

Figure 1: The above electron micrographs demonstrate the diverse starch granule shapes and sizes we have generated in wheat. Scale bars = 10 µm.