New apricot and peach varieties from Maspes

The Maspes project, started in 2007 by CRPV to obtain a new varietal range of high-quality apricots, peaches and nectarines through genetic improvement continues to bear fruit. Partial results were presented on 25th June 2018 by researchers Daniele Bassi (University of Milan) and Stefano Foschi (Crpv).

Audience at the Maspes conference

"Varietal improvement has two objectives: organoleptic quality and resistance to disease. When it comes to apricots, we only employ genetic material that is resistant to Sharka," explained Bassi.

The conference held on 25th June 2018

Stefano Foschi stressed that an average of 12-14 years pass between the moment the first crossbreed is carried out and the attainment of a new variety. "Royalties are used to refinance the project. We have 15 hectares of experimental fields that use up a lot of resources every year." 

Piero Turroni

Piero Turroni from Consorzio Newplant stressed that, were GMOs allowed, research would be much quicker. However, the genome editing technique is currently being approved on a Community level, so time frames will be reduced and the extra-agricultural implications of employing GMOs will be avoided. 

Daniele Bassi

As regards apricot varieties, there is Pieve (good rusticity, excellent flavour and appealing with fruits of a higher quality compared to Portici and less susceptible to cracking and browning) and Petra (very interesting as very appealing, large grades and excellent texture).

As for peaches, there is Bordò (early with appealing fruit with a nice flavour and excellent texture), Rebus 028 nectarines (early, appealing and subacidic flavour) and Dulciva (late, highly productive and large fruits).

"These new varietal selections were obtained employing innovative methods based on genomics and in particular on MAS (marker-assisted selection)," explained Alvaro Crociani, CRPV director. 

Simona Caselli

The project collected the main demands of the main Producer Organisations (Apo Conerpo, Apofruit Italia, Orogel Fresco, Pempa-Corer) and was initially co-financed by Regione Emilia-Romagna. It was then financed entirely by the POs part of CRPV. 

Stefano Foschi and Daniele Bassi

Nursery gardener Secondo Danisi said that the projects to be able to use Regional Development Plan money were presented so as to push research further.

A new selection

Regional councillor for agriculture Simona Caselli talked about the need to coordinate stone fruit production not only on a regional or national level, but all over the Mediterranean basin.


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