Anthocyanins are water‐soluble pigments found in all plant tissues throughout the plant kingdom. There is a growing evidence that anthocyanins support plants to cope with different abiotic stresses including drought and sub- or supra-optimal temperatures.
Research conducted by the RYE-SUS team members from the University of Saskatchewan and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada recently noted an overall higher abundance and diversity of anthocyanins for the most cold-hardy as compared to the less hardy genotypes. A further important result from this study sheds new light on winter-hardiness in rye: the winter survival rate of both cultivars 'Halo' and 'Kustro' was classified with the highest winter survival score (very high), while the cultivars 'Petkuser Kurzstroh' and 'Petkuser' both belong to the class with very low winter survival rate. Likewise, winter survival of the cultivars 'Carokurz' and 'Carstens' was classified as moderate and low, respectively. These results trigger further research activities within our consortium to translate knowledge into practical rye breeding programs.