Growing Futures


Tasty summerfruit for premium markets

Consumers who enjoy eating summerfruit want to be able to eat high quality fruit all year round. Extending the season for summerfruit in exporting countries, combined with new technologies that ensure quality is maintained during storage and transportation to distant markets, can ensure summerfruit earns a premium on the global marketplace.

Plant & Food Research’s summerfruit breeding programme is investigating the qualities in apricots and peaches that appeal most to consumers, and developing new cultivars with maximum consumer appeal that can be harvested early or late in the season to fill the gaps in market supply. We use modern genomics techniques to screen our extensive germplasm collection and identify the genes responsible for key traits to guide the identification of parents and offspring with the most genetic potential.

Our orchard management research is focused on new tools and technologies that optimise plant productivity, minimise pests and diseases, and enhance water use. We also develop harvest and storage protocols that allow growers to pick their fruit at optimum times and store them appropriately, ensuring fruit delivered to the consumer are of the highest quality and taste.