The major considerations for faba bean variety selection are the target market, seed size and maturity. Faba bean varieties fall into two categories:
- Tannin varieties – coloured flowers, tan seed coats, seeds are often larger, grown for human consumption markets due to desirable cooking quality
- Low or near zero tannin varieties – white flowers, white seed coats, grown mainly for the livestock feed industry
Due to cross-pollination that can occur between tannin and low tannin varieties, ensure at least 500 metres between types. Large-seeded tannin types have better cooking quality and are more desirable in export markets, such as Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and Ethiopia. Low-tannin varieties are grown most commonly in Manitoba. Refer to the Pulse & Soybean Variety Guide for variety data, including days to maturity, thousand seed weight and yield. For long-term yield averages based on variety, refer to the MASC Variety Yield Data Browser.