The federal government is awarding $6.2 million to University of California, Davis, to study how to use breeding and genetic information to protect strawberry crops from future diseases and pests.
The four-year grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) centers on addressing expanding and emerging threats to strawberries, a popular fruit packed with Vitamin C and key to the diets of many Americans.
The Latest Offerings Are Large, Sweet and Will Ripen in Winter
Red, ripe strawberries are the hallmark of spring in California. Two new varieties from the Public Strawberry Breeding Program at the University of California, Davis, will provide consumers with big, flavorful strawberries throughout fall and winter, too.
“These cultivars were developed to provide high-quality fruit from late summer through the holidays,” said Professor Steve Knapp, director of the UC Davis Strawberry Breeding Program.
Publicly available plants will help farmers manage diseases, production costs
The Public Strawberry Breeding Program at the University of California, Davis, has released five new varieties that will help farmers manage diseases, control costs and produce plenty of large, robust berries using less water, fertilizer and pesticides. Two of the new varieties could increase yields by almost 30 percent.
Scientists Uncover Genetic Roadmap of Cultivated Strawberry
Consumers want strawberries to be red, sweet, ripe and juicy, like those fresh picked from a garden. Suppliers want them to be easy to handle and ship, without getting squished. Commercial strawberry growers need their crops to be high-yielding and disease-resistant.