British-Swiss raspberry program for home gardens

Photo: Lubera

Swiss Lubera AG has signed an agreement with the British research station East Malling (EMR). Lubera will launch in Europe all new East Malling raspberry varieties for the home garden market, reports The Swiss company will not only market the released varieties, but also brings in into this cooperation its knowledge of the home garden market. Mark Kobelt, breeder and founder of Lubera, expects that varieties now more easily can be selected for this particular market, a market where highest yield, culture and transportability are not the most important issues. Feli Fernandez from East Malling calls it a win-win situation. Working with Lubera results in breeding better varieties for home gardeners, she foresees.
Lubera is a relatively small nursery in Switzerland with breeding programs for several fruit species such as apple, pear, currant, gooseberry, blackberry, raspberry and strawberry. Kobalt started with these breeding activities about 20 years ago.
Feli Fernández is EMR’s raspberry breeder. She is proficient in all the key techniques of raspberry breeding including designing crosses, pollination, screening for spinelessness, aphid and root rot resistance, raspberry bushy dwarf virus identification and testing, cane disease recording, selection in the seedling populations and the evaluation of selections.