Yesterday, we talked about the new white strawberry that is being developed at the University of Florida. That may lead some people to ask - is this a genetically modified organism or GMO? The answer is no, says strawberry breeder Dr. Vance Whitaker.
Whitaker… “The white color actually exists in nature in wild strawberry species. And we've essentially just harnessed that and bred it in, just by moving pollen from one plant to another. Basically the traditional selective breeding method. So there's nothing unusual in the development of this. It's just like all of our other strawberry varieties, just develop through traditional breeding.”
Now that this variety is developed, how does it get commercialized and eventually in the hands of growers?
Whitaker… “We work really closely with the Florida Strawberry Growers Association - the organization of the Florida growers themselves. And what they do is they basically handle the commercialization process in a way that serves them best. So we say here, here's the variety, here's the rights to it. You guys licensed the nurseries that produce the plants. And then we just work as closely with them to serve their needs as, as best we can.”
You can learn more about the latest strawberry varieties on the University of Florida IFAS website.