New hybrid stone fruit varieties harvested in Chile
Following four years of research new hybrid varieties of peaches, nectarines and plums have been harvested by a Chilean fruit and technology consortium, according to a statement from the country’s Ministry of Agriculture.
The varieties due not yet have names and are the results of crosses performed over the last four years. The consortium, Consorcio Tecnológico de la Industria Hortofrutícola S.A in Spanish) includes Chile’s Universidad Catolica (Catholic University), fruit exporters association (ASOEX) and 26 other private companies, the statement said.
To perform the research the consortium received funds from the agricultural ministry through the country’s innovation fund for competitiveness. The group, formed in 2004, aims to develop new varieties in Chile, which traditionally has bought royalities from breeders and research institutes abroad.
The research grounds, located in Pirque, a rural community on the southern rim of the greater Santiago area now hold over 100 different varieties of stone fruit. The primary focus of the research is to create fruit that better weathers the travel time required for export and increase the profitability of the country’s fruit industry.
The consortium recently signed an agreement with the National Peach Repository of China, which holds genetic data of more than 800 peach varieties in order to find new varieties apt for Chile’s environment.
Photo: Chilean Ministry of Agriculture