Dattaraya N. Kale from Solapur, Maharashtra, has developed five new varieties of grapes over the years. His latest, the ‘King Berry’ grows up to 20 mm in length with a 25 mm diameter. Over the years, varieties from the Vitis Vinifera have attracted the attention of farmer breeders and so far there are around a dozen new varieties developed by farmers belonging to the grape-growing belt of Maharashtra.
Dattaraya N. Kale’s grapes have found acceptance, not just among growers in their home state, but also among those in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
The latest variety, the King Berry, launched this February, has attracted a lot of attention due to its size. An elongated variety, which is black and purple in colour has an astounding berry length of 45-50mm and width (berry diameter) of 24-25mm, making it suitable for making premium raisins.