Colin Curwen-McAdams

Washington State University
PhD candidate with Stephen Jones
Mount Vernon, WA


Colin is a Clif Bar Seed Matters Fellow working on a PhD with Dr. Stephen Jones in The Bread Lab at Washington State University. His work is focused around re-imagining and differentiating wheat to support a regional grain economy and diverse agricultural systems in the costal Northwest.

Colin is breeding a perennial grain crop based on wheat as a dual use grain and forage crop that can remain in for multiple seasons, adding organic matter, reducing tillage and offering options for animal integrated systems. He is also breeding blue and purple spring wheat varieties specifically for whole wheat sourdough baking. The colors do not fit into established classifications and offer an opportunity to develop regional sales outside of the commodity markets. The breeding work is tied together by an investigation of how intellectual property restrictions might impact regional breeding efforts, with an appreciation of the cultural and nutritional importance of whole grains for communities.