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Counce P.A.,University of Arkansas | Siebenmorgen T.J.,University of Arkansas | Ambardekar A.A.,Mars Food Global
Annals of Applied Biology | Year: 2015

The rice crop's reproductive developmental timing in days and thermal time is needed for effective modelling, research interpretation and management of the crop. To obtain these data, a field study was conducted at Stuttgart, Arkansas, USA in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. The study utilised data collected from randomised complete block design field experiments with three replications and six rice lines in each of the years. Averaged across years and cultivars, the degree-day-10 (DD10) intervals (thermal time units with a base temperature of 10°C) for Reproductive Stages R3, R4, R5, R6, R7 and R8 were 21, 30, 19, 48, 70 and 189°C-day, respectively. The average intervals in calendar days for R3, R4, R5, R6, R7 and R8 were 2.3, 3.3, 2.3, 6.0, 4.5 and 26.7 days, respectively. For R4 and R5, cultivar rankings differed over the 4 years with cultivar differences being mostly small, non-significant or inconsistent. For R6, the cultivar Cypress had either the longest or among the longest intervals. For R7, the medium grains had the longest or among the longest intervals. For R3 and R8, cultivar differences were significant with no significant year by cultivar interactions. For the R3 intervals, the primary difference was between Bengal and the five other lines. For R8, the intervals in both days and DD10 were least for Cypress, followed by Wells, followed by LaGrue and XL723 followed by the medium grains Bengal and Jupiter which had the longest intervals for R8. Consequently, the R3 interval could be generalised to five of the six lines in the study while R4, R5, R6 and R7 intervals could be generally applied with some caution. The R8 intervals were different among lines and grain types. These differences should not be ignored. The extremely short R8 interval for Cypress is likely associated with its high head rice yields across a range of environments compared to other long-grain rice cultivars and hybrids in the USA The utilisation of the rice reproductive growth stage intervals can potentially improve analysis and interpretation of field plot research, model predictions and management of the rice crop. © 2015 Association of Applied Biologists.

Samuels F.,Mars Food Europe | Hare J.,Mars Food UK | De Man W.,Mars Food Global
Nutrition Bulletin | Year: 2015

Mars Food UK commissioned the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) to develop the NutritionCompass, and have applied this to building healthy recipes and meals. The research conducted by BNF, comparing popular meals in the UK against a set of nutritional criteria based on UK nutrient and food-based recommendations, culminated in this tool, which can be applied to evaluate the 'healthiness' of a recipe based on the criteria developed. Key outcomes showed that meals made from partly pre-prepared ingredients compare well with meals cooked from scratch provided they are used in a meal occasion that includes a healthy balance of food groups such as starchy carbohydrates, vegetables and protein-rich foods. The development of the NutritionCompass has allowed recipes and recipe suggestions to be optimised using partly pre-prepared ingredients. Small changes in a recipe can result in a significantly healthier meal (e.g. adding vegetables or baking rather than frying, which is comparable for taste, convenience and affordability). Mars Food UK is exploring how this tool can be used more widely across the business and how it can be used to enable consumers to eat healthier meals. © 2015 British Nutrition Foundation.

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