Canadian wheat classes

Find varieties by class

Check if your variety of wheat belongs to a Canadian class. The variety designation lists help producers and grain handlers identify which varieties are eligible for the top grades of each class.

Canadian wheat varieties fall into classes and each class is unique. The varieties within each class are grouped by their functional characteristics. For example, varieties in the Canada Prairie Spring Red class have medium hard kernels and medium dough strength. Canadian wheat classes are categorized by Canada Western and Canada Eastern, the regions in which the varieties are grown.

Eastern Canadian wheat classes

Characteristics and end uses of the 7 millling classes of eastern Canadian wheat
Class Characteristics End uses
Canada Eastern Amber Durum (CEAD)
  • durum wheat
  • high yield of semolina
  • excellent pasta-making quality
  • three milling grades
  • semolina for pasta
  • couscous
Canada Eastern Hard Red Winter (CEHRW)
  • hard red winter wheat
  • good milling quality
  • three milling grades
  • French breads, flat breads, steamed breads, noodles
Canada Eastern Hard White Spring (CEHWS)
  • hard white spring wheat
  • superior milling quality producing flour with excellent colour
  • three milling grades
  • bread and noodle production
Canada Eastern Red Spring (CERS)
  • hard red spring wheat
  • superior milling and baking quality
  • three milling grades
  • used for production of high volume pan bread
  • used alone or in blends with other wheat for hearth bread, steamed bread, noodles, flat bread, common wheat pasta
Canada Eastern Soft Red Winter (CESRW)
  • soft red winter wheat
  • low protein
  • cakes, pastry, cereal, crackers, biscuits and filling
Canada Eastern Soft White Spring (CESWS)
  • soft white spring wheat
  • low protein content
  • three milling grades
  • cookies, cakes, pastry, flat breads, noodles, steamed breads, chapatis
Canada Eastern White Winter (CEWW)
  • soft white winter wheat
  • low protein
  • cakes, pastry, cereal, crackers, biscuits and filling

Western Canadian wheat classes

Sample kernels from each of the 8 milling classes of western Canadian wheat

Photograph of the eight milling classes of western Canadian wheat.

The eight milling classes of western Canadian wheat photograph is available for download.

Characteristics and end uses of the 8 milling classes of western Canadian wheat
Class Characteristics End uses
Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPSR)
  • red spring wheat
  • medium hard kernels
  • medium dough strength
  • two milling grades
  • colour: opaque red to orange
  • size: midsize to large
  • shape: ovate to elliptical, incurved base
  • germ: midsize to small, oval
  • brush: small to midsize
  • hearth breads, flat breads, steamed breads, noodles
Canada Prairie Spring White (CPSW)
  • white spring wheat
  • medium dough strength
  • two milling grades
  • colour: white
  • size: midsize to large
  • shape: ovate to elliptical, incurved base
  • germ: midsize, oval
  • brush: small to midsize
  • flat breads, noodles, chapatis
Canada Western Amber Durum (CWAD)
  • durum wheat
  • high yield of semolina
  • excellent pasta-making quality
  • four milling grades
  • colour: amber
  • size: large to midsize
  • shape: midsize elliptical
  • germ: large, wide oval to rectangular
  • brush: varies
  • cheeks: angular
  • semolina for pasta
  • couscous
Canada Western Extra Strong (CWES)
  • hard red spring wheat
  • extra strong gluten
  • two milling grades
  • colour: dark to medium red
  • size: large
  • shape: ovate, s-shaped base
  • germ: large, wide, typically round
  • brush: large, collared ventrally
  • cheeks: round
  • ideal for blending
  • used in specialty products when high gluten strength is needed
Canada Western Hard White Spring (CWHWS)
  • hard white spring wheat
  • superior milling quality producing flour with excellent colour
  • three milling grades
  • colour: white
  • size: small to midsize
  • shape: oval to ovate
  • germ: round, midsize to large
  • brush: varies
  • bread and noodle production
Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS)
  • hard red spring wheat
  • superior milling and baking quality
  • four milling grades
  • various guaranteed protein levels
  • colour: translucent red
  • size: small to midsize
  • shape: midsize oval to ovate
  • germ: round, midsize to large
  • brush: varies
  • used for production of high volume pan bread
  • used alone or in blends with other wheat for hearth bread, steamed bread, noodles, flat bread, common wheat pasta
Canada Western Red Winter (CWRW)
  • hard red winter wheat
  • very good milling quality
  • two milling grades
  • colour: orange to opaque red
  • size: small to midsize
  • shape: elliptical
  • germ: small, oval to round
  • brush: small
  • cheeks: round
  • French breads, flat breads, steamed breads, noodles
Canada Western Soft White Spring (CWSWS)
  • soft white spring wheat
  • low protein content
  • three milling grades
  • colour: white
  • size: small to midsize
  • shape: ovate to oval
  • germ: small, oval
  • brush: varies
  • cookies, cakes, pastry, flat breads, noodles, steamed breads, chapatis

Canada Western General Purpose wheat class description

Varieties registered as Canada Western General Purpose are not required to meet the strict quality requirements of milling classes. Generally, varieties in this class are not appropriate for milling because of their high starch and low protein content, which affects end-use characteristics of the grain.

Varieties in the Canada Western General Purpose wheat class are typically high-yielding. Due to the combination of high starch and low protein, they are most suitable for uses such as ethanol product or animal feed.

Varieties within this class may look similar to varieties within other classes of wheat.