Press release

NEWS: Grower guidelines released for strawberry variety Malling™ Centenary

Malling™ Fruits has issued grower guidelines for Malling™ Centenary, its most successful variety that has become the strawberry industry’s standard Junebearer variety.

Bred by the East Malling Strawberry Breeding Club (EMSBC) and released in 2013 to commemorate 100 years of research at NIAB’s East Malling site, Malling™ Centenary replaced the previous standard Elsanta, with its high quality fruit, increased Class 1 percentage and reduced picking costs.

NEWS: Precision Breeding Bill will supercharge investment in UK crop innovation

New legislation to be debated by MPs in Parliament on Monday (31 October) could help unlock the UK’s global leadership in plant genetic research, and encourage innovation in agriculture to address the most pressing challenges of today – developing crops that are higher yielding, more nutritious, more resilient to climate change and less reliant on pesticides or fertilisers.

New trials vineyard adds to NIAB’s expanding viticulture portfolio

The trials vineyard, at NIAB’s East Malling site in Kent, consists of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in 24 rows (60 vines per row), and is available for bespoke trials, technical innovation, independent evaluation and commercial demonstrations. The client base includes companies seeking to develop new products and services for the horticultural industry, including agrochemical manufacturers evaluating new crop protection chemistry for subsequent sale into the viticulture sector.

Top billing for nutrient delivery & insect management at NIAB soft fruit technical webinar

New research and advice on nutrient delivery, microclimate management, yield prediction systems and pest management all feature in NIAB’s annual Soft Fruit Technical Webinar on 30th November, with places available to book now.

Free and open to all from across the soft fruit industry, the event will be once again held online due to the high levels of interest from UK and international audiences.

Helen Appleyard appointed Chief Officer of OSTS and Head of Analytical Services

Nick Watson, Director of Commercial Services said: “Helen takes over from Linda Maile, who has retired from the role this summer after eight years leading the team and having worked at NIAB in the OSTS for a record-breaking 53 years. We thank Linda for an incredible career at NIAB and wish her the very best for the future.”

BOOK NOW: BEESPOKE workshop to improve wildflower management skills

A workshop, held at NIAB East Malling in Kent on 26th October 2022, will help fruit growers improve their selection of appropriate wildflower seed mixes as well as wildflower strip establishment and management. Open to all, attendees will also learn about the benefits of wildflowers in fruit production in terms of both pollination and insect pest control.

NEWS: Drones proven to aid plant breeding in identifying valuable new crop traits

This will make it easier for crop breeders and researchers to select plants, or discover genes, based on marker patterns (genotypes) and desired traits (phenotypes).

Drones have great potential in plant breeding and crop research, collecting large-scale 2D/3D visual information from plants in field trials relatively easily and cost-effectively. Until now, it was difficult to use the data collected for reliable trait analysis and genetic mapping.

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