Research opens way for commercial Corn Gromwell planting for food supplements

A plant that used to be killed as a weed could soon be a valuable commercially grown crop, rich in essential fatty acids, says the Government.

Defra research showed that Corn Gromwell, packed with omega-3, had potential for mass planting by horticultural growers for the first time in the UK.

Corn Gromwell, native to Europe, North Africa, Siberia and Western Asia, was until recently best known as a common enemy to spring cereal crops.

Agriculture minister Jim Paice said: "This is a great example of the innovation our farming industry is so good at. This research will help farmers diversify."

Corn Gromwell contains stearidonic acid and could be marketed as a supplement or food ingredient. National Institute of Agricultural Botany and Technology Crops researchers found Corn Gromwell Buglossoides arvensis needed low amounts of fertilizer, had high yields and did not suffer from many pests or diseases.

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