Association among agro-industrial traits and simultaneous selection in sweet sorghum.
Sweet sorghum has emerged as an alternative crop for ethanol yield. The breeding of this crop is performed to obtain cultivars with high ethanol yield, which necessarily requires associating favorable phenotypes for multiple traits. Therefore, the aims of this study were to investigate the association between agro-industrial traits related to ethanol yield and identify the promising genotypes considering multiple traits in sweet sorghum. For this purpose, we evaluated 45 genotypes using a 9 x 5 alpha-lattice experimental design with three replications. The traits measured were flowering time, plant height, tons of stalk per hectare, total soluble solids, tons of brix per hectare, juice extraction, total recoverable sugars, and ethanol yield. Analyses were performed after the recovery of inter-block information. The interrelation of the traits was described by genotype-by-trait biplot. For simultaneous selection, the Modified Mulamba and Mock index was used. For almost all of the agro-industrial traits, except for juice extraction, selective accuracy was above 70%. There were significant differences among genotypes for all the traits. The genotype-by-trait biplot evidenced a positive association between most of the traits related to ethanol yield, except for juice extraction, indicating the possibility of indirect selection to obtain more productive genotypes. Some genotypes proved to be promising based on the selection index, as they accumulated phenotypes favorable for the traits of interest.