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  • Author or Editor: L. Bábel x
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The present study investigated how sighted and blind sensory assessors evaluated the quality of various apple varieties: Regal Prince (Gala Must), Jonagold Schneica (Jonica), Watson Jonathan, Golden Reinders and Generos. A total of 80 sighted and 12 blind people participated in the study, in three groups (sighted people without blindfolds, sighted people with blindfolds, blind people). The preference of sensory attributes (size, shape, colour, texture, taste and odour) was evaluated on a six-category scale. The data were analysed using single-factor (ANOVA, LSD95%, 99%) and multi-factor (Cluster analysis, ANOVA, LSD95%, 99%) evaluation. The results showed that blind and sighted assessors made similar judgements on external attributes perceptible by touch (size, shape), but differed in their evaluation of certain quality factors (flavour, taste), resulting in opponent patterns of preference on some apple varieties (Generos, Jonagold Schneica). A further conclusion of the experiment is that there was less deviation between the judgements of sighted assessors when they saw the apples than when they were blindfolded. The background of this phenomenon might be explained by the uncertainty and disturbed perception, which lead to inconsistent judgements.

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Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a serious problem in many wheat-growing areas worldwide. The breeding and cultivation of resistant wheat cultivars is the most promising strategy to reduce the risk of FHB. We report on the comparison of 20 Canadian and 20 European genotypes for FHB response and associated traits (deoxynivalenol content, Fusarium damaged kernels, plant height, heading date) in multi-environmental field trials in Canada and Germany after artificial inoculation with Fusarium culmorum (Germany) / F. graminearum (Canada). Our study revealed Canadian and European wheat lines that were stable in performance across countries and which therefore appear as valuable FHB resistance donors in Canadian as well as in German wheat breeding programs to further improve the resistance level of wheat cultivars against FHB.

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