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Wenatchee, WA, United States

Karina Gallardo R.,Washington State University | Nguyen D.,Washington State University | McCracken V.,Washington State University | Yue C.,University of Minnesota | And 2 more authors.
HortScience | Year: 2012

Over 60 rosaceous crop breeding programs exist in North America, but no information has been available on which traits are targeted for selection or how breeders make such decisions. We surveyed all active rosaceous fruit breeding programs in the United States and Canada to determine: 1) the relative importance of over 50 plant traits that breeders select for 2) the likelihood of selection for the most important traits; and 3) the factors influencing breeders' decisions. A double-bounded Tobit model was used to investigate the effect of supply chain parties, technical and socioeconomic challenges, and crop characteristics on the likelihood of selection for trait clusters. We found that consumer-driven forces positively impact the likelihood of selection for traits more than producer forces and a breeder's own experience. Technical factors are as important as socioeconomic factors but less important than market-related factors. Our findings provide the first ever evidence that a socioeconomic approach in specialty crop breeding programs can contribute to an improved understanding of the effects of different supply chain factors on breeding programs' trait priority setting. Source

Yue C.,University of Minnesota | Karina Gallardo R.,Washington State University | McCracken V.A.,Washington State University | Luby J.,University of Minnesota | And 3 more authors.
HortScience | Year: 2012

Rosaceous crops (e.g., almond, apple, apricot, caneberry, cherry, pear, peach, plum, rose, and strawberry) contribute to human health and well-being and collectively constitute the economic backbone of numerous NorthAmerican rural communities.We conducted a survey of U.S. and Canadian rosaceous fruit crop breeders to assess priority setting in their programs, sources of information for setting priorities, and challenges in making technical and management decisions. Input from producers and consumers was most important in establishing breeding program targets, although respondents' direct interaction with consumers was not frequent. Breeding targets and management decisions were mostly associated with the breeder's type of organization, scope and range of crops, and intended use of the crop (fresh, processed, or both). Source

Iezzoni A.,Michigan State University | Weebadde C.,Michigan State University | Luby J.,University of Minnesota | Yue C.,University of Minnesota | And 6 more authors.
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2010

Genomics research has not yet been translated into routine practical application in breeding Rosaceae fruit crops (peach, apple, strawberry, cherry, apricot, pear, raspberry, etc.). Through dedicated efforts of many researchers worldwide, a wealth of genomics resources has accumulated, including EST libraries, genetic and physical maps, QTLs, and whole genome sequences. The potential of genomics approaches to enhance crop improvement, particularly through marker-assisted breeding (MAB), is enormous, but unfulfilled. The U.S. Rosaceae genomics, genetics, and breeding community, with strong international involvement, has united behind the goal of translational genomics and collaborated on the development of large-scale USDA grant proposals. RosBREED, funded for four years from September 2009, incorporates eight teams (Breeding, Socio- Economics, Pedigree-Based Analysis, Breeding Information Management System, Genomics, Genotyping, MAB Pipeline, and Extension) in a transdisciplinary framework that involves significant educational and outreach activities and stakeholder participation. Objectives are to (1) enhance the likelihood of new cultivar adoption, enlarge market potential, and increase consumption of Rosaceae fruits with socio-economics knowledge objectively used in breeding decisions; (2) establish a sustainable technical infrastructure for an efficient MAB Pipeline in Rosaceae; (3) integrate breeding and genomics resources with a standardized breeding information management system incorporating Pedigree-Based Analysis; (4) implement MAB in core RosBREED breeding programs with a common focus on fruit quality traits; and (5) enhance sustainability of cultivar development with MAB technology transfer to current and future U.S. Rosaceae breeders and engagement of key stakeholder groups. Coordinated action is now required to make RosBREED a reality and fulfill the promise of genomics. Source

Volk G.M.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Chao C.T.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Norelli J.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Brown S.K.,New York State Agricultural Experiment Station | And 5 more authors.
Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution | Year: 2015

Apple (Malus × domestica Borkh.) is one of the top three US fruit crops in production and value. Apple production has high costs for land, labor and inputs, and orchards are a long-term commitment. Production is dominated by only a few apple scion and rootstock cultivars, which increases its susceptibility to dynamic external threats. Apple crop wild relatives, including progenitor species Malus sieversii (Ledeb.) M. Roem., Malus orientalis Uglitzk., Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill., and Malus prunifolia (Willd.) Borkh., as well as many other readily hybridized species, have a wide range of biotic and abiotic stress resistances as well as desirable productivity and fruit quality attributes. However, access to wild materials is limited and wild Malus throughout the world is at risk of loss due to human encroachment and changing climatic patterns. The USDA-ARS National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) Malus collection, maintained by the Plant Genetic Resources Unit in Geneva, NY, US is among the largest collections of cultivated apple and Malus species in the world. The collection currently has 5004 unique accessions in the field and 1603 seed accessions representing M. × domestica, 33 Malus species, and 15 hybrid species. Of the trees in the field, 3,070 are grafted and are represented by a core collection of 258 individuals. Many wild species accessions are represented as single seedlings (non-grafted). The crop vulnerability status of apple in the US is moderate because although there are a few breeders developing new commercial cultivars who also access Malus species, threats and challenges include new diseases, pests, and changing climate combined with industry needs and consumer demands, with a limited number of cultivars in production. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht (outside the USA). Source

Hehnen D.,Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission | Hehnen D.,University of Bonn | Hanrahan I.,Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission | Lewis K.,Washington State University | And 2 more authors.
Scientia Horticulturae | Year: 2012

A novel device is presented for mechanical blossom thinning with first test trials in the US on seven-year-old apple [Malus domestica (Borkh.)] 'Buckeye Gala' near Yakima, WA, USA. Trees were mechanically blossom-thinned with the novel string thinning device, developed by Damerow et al. (2007), at 260 or 360rpm rotor speeds and a 2.5kmh -1 vehicle speed to improve fruit quality, reduce hand and chemical thinning and to prevent or overcome alternate bearing; manually thinned trees served as controls in a replicated, randomized block trial. The strongest mechanical thinning treatment (360rpm, 2.5kmh -1) had a positive effect on apple fruit size (75mm versus 72mm in the hand-thinned control), firmness 9.0kgcm -2 versus 8.9kgcm -2, advanced ripening i.e. starch breakdown, sweetness 12.3-12.8°Brix versus 11.9°Brix in the control, contained the largest malic acid content 0.43% versus 0.37% in the control and more red blush, i.e. fruit coloration. The sugar:acid ratio was maintained particularly after the strongest 360rpm mechanical thinning (29:1) and resembled that of the chemical thinning and the hand-thinned control (32:1), since fruit with higher sugar content also contained more malic acid. The best return bloom was achieved by the conventional chemical standard (105%), followed by the strongest mechanical thinning (92% with 360rpm) then the combination of mechanical and chemical thinning (85%) compared to much lower values in the control (69%), showing the efficacy of blossom thinning to overcome alternate bearing. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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