Evaluation of novel peach cultivars in the European Union: the EUFRIN Peach and Apricot Working Group initiative
Peach cultivars can undergo large variations in performance when cultivated in different environmental conditions. As growers cannot afford the financial risk of choosing a cultivar unsuited to their specific conditions, comprehensive information on marketed cultivars is useful and highly needed. Several organizations in the European Union (EU) are engaged in the performance assessment of novel cultivars based on experimental trials. However, the exchange of information is generally poor, limiting the completeness of information on new releases derived the results obtained in various climatic and agronomical contexts. The Apricot and Peach working group established in 2014 within EUFRIN (European Fruit Research Institutes Network (2017), www.eufrin.org) has recently embarked on a new initiative aiming to implement a collaborative varietal evaluation system in the EU countries. The first step was the establishment of a common list of descriptors to assess the performance of peach cultivars in the testing trials. About 40 descriptors, related to different phenological traits such as flowering or harvest period, productivity, fruit appearance and internal quality, susceptibility to physiological disorders and to some major diseases in peach were selected. The protocols to measure and score each trait are being set up, as well as the selection of a common set of cultivars to include as references in the various testing sites in order to homogenize the evaluation. Implementation of this network will allow real-time information exchange on new peach releases.
Giovannini, D, Bassi, D., Cutuli, M., Drogoudi, P., Foschi, S., Hilaire, C., Liverani, A., Ruesch, J. and Iglesias, I. (2021). Evaluation of novel peach cultivars in the European Union: the EUFRIN Peach and Apricot Working Group initiative. Acta Hortic. 1304, 13-20
descriptors, fruit quality, phenology, P. persica L. (Batsch.), testing trials, agronomical performance, adaptability