Seed Quality Of Locally Produced Wheat In Saudi Arabia


Abdullah A. A. Al-Doss

Plant Production Dept. Collage of Agriculture

King Saud University



Wheat seed production in Saudi Arabia is conducted by some authorized agricultural companies. However some unauthorized companies and farmers produce and distribute wheat seeds in the local market. This study was conducted to evaluate seed quality of locally produced wheat seed. A total of 17 seed sources were collected from three agricultural regions including samples from all authorized companies and 6 unauthorized seed sources. Standard seed tests were conducted to determine purity, seed gravity and seed germination percentages. Also, the number of seeds with insect damage and seeds with black point were estimated. In addition, Fungus colonies on germinating seeds were counted.

Although, all tested samples belong to one variety yocora rojo, results showed marked variation in seed quality between the two seasons and a significant variation among seed sources in all studied traits. Significant variation was observed in seed purity, in which several samples failed to reach 98% purity level required for seed certification. In addition, poor germination percentages were observed for most tested samples, in which 7 out of 11 authorized samples failed to pass the 92% germination required for certification in both seasons. Furthermore, seed gravity varied among samples. Significant variation was, also, observed for percentage of seeds with black point. All seed sources had seeds with black point in the first season ranging from 6 to 48%. However, low incidents of seeds with black point were observed in the second season. Seeds with insect damage were observed in 6 seed sources in the first season and in two seed sources in the second season.

This study has shown that wide variation in seed quality among locally produced wheat seeds exist as result of weak technical supervision on production and treatment of seeds. Therefore, there is an argent need to develop an effective field inspection and to apply seed production requirements to clear the market from poor quality seeds.