New Strawberry Variety Improves Flavor and Earliness

New Strawberry Variety Improves Flavor and Earliness

Tim Hammerich
Tim Hammerich
News Reporter
Here with your Southeast Regional Ag Report, I’m Tim Hammerich.

Many Florida strawberry growers have recently wrapped up planting, and are now trying to produce as much as possible before Valentine’s Day when competing fruit from Mexico will start entering the United States again.

Strawberry breeders like Dr. Vance Whitaker are constantly trying to give growers the edge when it comes to quality and earliness to harvest.

Whitaker… “Early yield is a huge focus for us in the UF strawberry breeding program. Second is quality, which includes flavor. We've got to have a product that people want to eat in order to be competitive in the market and be successful.”

Dr. Whitaker and his team at the University of Florida recently announced a new variety that matches the earliness of the popular Brilliance variety and tastes even better than the popular Sensation variety.

Whitaker… “Currently, our best flavored variety is Sensation. The 10,000 acres that are grown in the Plant City area are basically split 60/40 between two varieties, Brilliance and Sensation. Sensation is the king of flavor, but this variety beats sensation just by a little bit on flavor. So it has the earliness of Brilliance, but a flavor that's better than Sensation. And we hope that that combination is what makes it successful.”

The new variety hasn’t been named yet, but it will be available on the market soon.

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