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Developing Tools for Long-Term Breeding of Blueberry Germplasm for UK Production

McCallum, Susan, Woodhead, Mary, Jorgensen, Linzi, Gordon, Sandra, Brennan, Rex, Graham, Julie, Hackett, Christine A., Rowland, Lisa J., Hancock, James F., Olmstead, James W., Bassil, Nahla V.
International journal of fruit science 2012 v.12 no.1-3 pp. 294
Vaccinium, blueberries, breeding, computer software, consumer demand, fruit consumption, fruit quality, germplasm, growers, industry, packaging, quantitative trait loci, tetraploidy, United Kingdom
Fruit consumption in the UK, particularly of berry fruits, is expanding rapidly and consumer demand for blueberries (Vaccinium spp.) is at record levels with UK growers unable to meet current demand. Consumers are aware that eating fruit can be pleasurable and with appropriate packaging, convenient, but blueberry remains unfamiliar to a wide cross section of UK consumers. There is great potential for UK growers to supply high quality fresh blueberries across a wide season so that consumption of this healthy fruit can be integrated into the British diet. A genetic framework for future crop improvement is required to develop a thriving and sustainable industry. The genetic component of this project builds on the statistical developments derived from the software program, TetraploidMap, to identify fruit quality, health, and agronomic-related quantitative trait loci in tetraploid blueberry for marker assisted breeding.