Variety improvement for canning peaches (CF08003)
This is a final research report from Hort Innovation’s historical archives. Please note that as these reports may date back as far as the 1990s, the content and recommendations within them may be superseded by more recent research.
What was it all about?
New canning peach varieties that delivered improved quality and greater yields were vital to the survival of the Australian canned fruit industry.
The benefits of improved varieties had been clearly demonstrated with the success of Tatura 204 from the previous Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Tatura breeding program in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Tatura 204 reset the benchmark for fruit quality and productivity with a ten percent increase in pack-out rate and six percent annual increase in production. Tatura 204 also enabled the development of new product lines within the cannery because of its improved quality.
Over the previous 15 years DPI Tatura had developed a new series of peaches with characteristics similar to the standard canning variety Tatura 204. These new canning peaches evened out the peaks in fruit supply to the cannery, and be adaptable to global climatic changes.
A large emphasis of the breeding program had been on improving the high productivity standard set by Tatura 204. Productivity evaluations were made at low to high crop loads to determine the ability of each selection to produce fruit of a commercial size.
A new series of canning peach varieties had been recommended to SPC-Ardmona. They would be progressively released to the canning industry over the next 5 years as commercial trialling progresses. The first release was expected to be Tatura Blaze which ripened between Tatura 204 and Golden Queen.
After more than 7 decades of DPI research in the development of improved varieties of canning peaches for the Australian industry the breeding program closed in 2008. The Canning Industry through SPC-Ardmona continued to breed peaches for future needs on a private basis at their new trial site. Peach germplasm required for future cross breeding had been transferred, along with recent selections still requiring further evaluation.
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This project was funded by Hort Innovation (then Horticulture Australia Limited) with the financial support of SPC Ardmona Operations Limited.
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