With Suriano (Nova Siri Genetics) focus on the campaign and the varieties
The real goal of the strawberry industry is the deseasonalization, to be achieved, however, by keeping constant the qualitative and nutraceutical characteristics of the product. A purpose that Nova Siri Genetics has reached with the Marimbella brand, after years of genetic improvement work. We talked about it with Carmela Suriano, business development director EMEA of Nova Siri Genetics.
Is it right to say that Marimbella is revolutionizing the early period, already offering a high quality strawberry in December compared to other less performing varieties?
NSG's activity of genetic improvement on strawberries and berries is strictly related to production and market needs. The NSG 203 cultivar, known by its corresponding Marimbella® brand, found favor with the producers, because it meets their need to seasonally adjust strawberry production, providing the market with a superior quality product, starting from the autumn and winter months.
How did the sales of the new varieties go, with specific reference to Marimbella, Rossetta and Gioelita?
The licensed nurseries of these three NSG varieties have made installations in different high ground areas of Spain and Poland. The types of plants supplied to the producers of the Mediterranean areas for the realization of their investments are two: the pot plant and the fresh plant. For both there has been an increase in quantities in the regions of Southern Italy, Greece, Spain and Morocco. Looking at Italy as a whole, however, the cultivation of strawberries sees a slight downsizing, due to the growth of production costs and, above all, due to the lack of manpower. Despite this climate of uncertainty in the industry, our varieties increased by 5% compared to the previous campaign. Furthermore, the countries of South America fall within our area of interest, and we have an internationalization process already underway: we are waiting for the patents in these countries, along with the agreements with important local realities, which prove to be quite interested in testing our variety in loco.
Why should a producer buy your cultivars?
In addition to the rusticity of the plant and the organoleptic characteristics of the fruit, the cultivars present in the varietal offer of NSG are complementary to each other, in terms of fruit ripening calendar. This brings advantages to the producer in terms of production continuity, with a consequent presence on the market that reaches up to more than 8 months a year.
If flavor and aesthetics are acquired characteristics for your strawberries, at what stage are the shelf life, resistance to diseases and environmental stress?
The ongoing climate changes, the environmental sustainability and the increasingly variable tastes of the market have changed the paradigms of research. NSG has been able to combine innovation and tradition, offering varieties that give competitive advantages to all players in the supply chain. Licensed nurserymen appreciate the rusticity and productivity of NSG varieties. These characteristics, in fact, are quite important to face difficulties in creating nurseries, due to the limitations of the products allowed for the disinfection of the soils. Producers can count on a plant capable of producing with low environmental impact cultivation techniques, which allow them to offer on the market an increasingly healthy product with high quality organoleptic characteristics already in the winter months and until late summer.
Will the genetic material under test allow the presentation of new varieties in the short term?
NSG's research always continues, given that it takes several years to identify innovative cultivars in line with market demands. We are currently completing the protection procedure for some strawberry cultivars in Europe. Furthermore, within our experimental fields, there are several interesting selections, which are also experiencing positive feedback from our network of Italian and foreign producers.