Ferreira J. J. , Romero del Castillo R., Perez Vega E. , Plans M., Simó J., Casañas F. (2012) Sensory changes related to breeding for plant architecture and resistance to viruses and anthracnose in bean market class Fabada (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). Euphityca.
Consumers hold landraces in high esteem and often consider that breeding programs lead to a loss of sensory quality, although consumers’ opinions have not been scientifically confirmed. As a model case of study we recorded seed sensory traits in six inbred common bean lines classified in the market class Fabada obtained by backcrossing and/or pedigree selection (to change the plant architecture and increase resistances) and then cultivated in two environments in two consecutive years. A sensory panel noted differences among all the inbreds, but only the introduction of the gene fin (determinate growth habit) seemed to be associated to a loss of quality (rougher seed coat and lower percentage of whole beans after cooking). As theoretically expected, changes in sensory traits were smaller in inbreds obtained through simple backcrossing than in those obtained through pedigree selection after inbred crossing. Large differences in sensory traits due to environmental factors were also recorded (similar to the genetic effects in magnitude), especially soil type and rainfall around flowering. These results make it highly recommendable to evaluate sensory attributes in the course of breeding programs to ensure that the sensory quality is not lost. Given the importance of the environmental component in the phenotypic variation of the sensory traits studied, crop location and management also appear as key factors for the obtainment of optimum products.