Plant breeding is a crucial activity in GRADILIS development strategy. It allows us to provide our customers with dedicated new varieties which will match all their new challenges (societal or consumption’s or orchard mechanization issues).
GRADILIS Research has a 10 ha research center, where are concentrated all the activities in varieties creation (focused mainly on apple and plum). Each year, 10,000 hybrids are created, observed and selected, but few are chosen at the end ! We proceed to a Marker-Assisted Selection (MAS).
Our new apple varieties are scab resistant (Vf resistance as a minimum), but they could have in the future a panel of genetic resistance (against scab, powdery mildew, pre-harvest drop, etc…). In ten years from now, the resistance to apple aphids will be directly integrated into fruit tree seedlings’ genetic. Nowadays, our program already produces scab resistant Gala and Golden apples; it creates several hybrids to fill the slots between Gala and Golden and, furthermore, to improve the range of early summer varieties.
The Languedoc region offers harsh climatic conditions for apples (high pressure from codling moth, powdery mildew, sunburns, coloring issues…) which give us the opportunity to test mercilessly the weaknesses of our innovating hybrids.
François Chevalier, in charge of the research center, leads simultaneously all the creation’s programs of GRADILIS Research and all the selection’s ones for ABCZ Group, including the QTee Celina peer (cov) and the NOVADI apples (Story and Mandy in particular).
Following Gradirose and Gradiyel (mostly known as “La Rosée du Pilat”), Gradisca is the last success story of our GRADILIS Research apples’ program. Based on Fuji genetic, this sweet tasted variety deals particularly well with the South Tyrol climatic conditions; it will be developed exclusively for the Italian cooperative group Melinda.