Agricom’s ‘Beast’ unleashed

Everything about the Manta Italian ryegrass highlights significant improvements farmers should see almost straight away, Agricom says.

MANTA, FONDLY KNOWN as “The Beast”, is an addition to Agricom’s grass portfolio.

It is a late-heading diploid Italian ryegrass, noted for its very strong year-round production and aggressive winter and early spring growth.

Agricom has been very pleased with the onfarm performance of its previous generation Italian ryegrass named Asset, however everything about Manta highlights significant improvements farmers should see almost straight away.

Manta is a new generation of Italian ryegrass that has undergone significant selection in the upper North Island and includes genetics from short term ryegrass ecotypes (some possibly hybrids) from Northland.

Alongside this northern New Zealand ecotype material, Manta has parents from a core pool of successful NZ Italian cultivars as well as genetics from Spain making it a diverse and exciting addition to Agricom’s ryegrass portfolio.

While Manta is nil endophyte (AR37 available in 2024), it has a particularly strong second winter growth habit which is productive and highly visual. With its strong establishment, Manta is ideal for undersowing into thinning or run-out pastures.

Manta is a long-lived Italian with strong potential for persistence beyond its first year. Survival of Manta through a second summer is dependent on region and Argentine stem weevil populations.

Agricom’s East Coast territory sales manager, Georgia Massie, has seen Manta excel through the trial programme in her time within the extension team in the Waikato.

“After watching all Agricom’s new ryegrass genetics come through, Manta would have to be the standout cultivar when comparing to our current products and other products that are currently in the market.”