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Ongoing project

High health pre-commercial propagation material for Australian strawberry growers (BS19000)

Key research provider: Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions

What’s it all about?

This investment is producing healthy propagation material for the pre-commercial temperate, sub-tropical and Mediterranean varieties developed through the industry’s national breeding program, currently managed by the levy-funded project National strawberry varietal improvement program (BS17000). Together, these projects are ensuring that the Australian strawberry industry has access to improved, locally adapted varieties into the future, continuing the development and commercial release of superior varieties for targeted environments.

Project BS19000 specifically undertakes vigorous testing for a range of bacterial, fungal and viral pathogens, as well as heat treatment for pathogen eradication. High-health pathogen-tested strawberry varieties are critical to industry as they reduce the economic impact of pests and diseases on runner and fruit production.

The first five selections from the breeding program have completed the first year of testing and daughter material is available for distribution to growers. This involved testing for viruses using molecular and biological indexing methods and for fungi using baiting. The plants were monitored weekly for disease symptoms and pest incursions, and no pathogens were detected.

Nine selections have been made for delivery and testing during the second year of the project.

Related levy funds

This project is a strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Strawberry Fund