Spanish team looking to breed seedless mangoes
The province of Malaga in southern Spain is the largest mango producing area in Europe. There are approximately 4300 hectares of mangoes under cultivation with more mangoes being planted each year. Most Spanish tropical fruit (97%) is grown in Malaga with the majority of production (90%) exported to the European Union.
It is estimated that there are about 300 commercial varieties of mangoes, all with differences in shape, exterior color, sweetness, texture, type of pulp and seed size. Not all adapt in the same way to different growing areas because they do not experience the same climatic conditions. This means that companies that obtain seeds, and research centres, are focused on the search for varieties of commercial interest that are productive, of high quality and that adapt to the different production areas.
One mango centre of expertise is the Institute of Subtropical and Mediterranean Horticulture (IHSM) La Mayora, which has one of the largest mango collections in the EU. It has approximately 80 different mango varieties from around the world. The experimental farm at La Mayora, which is located in Algarrobo, has many studies and trials underway aimed at improving mangoes and providing solutions for pests and diseases and best cultivation techniques.
In the search for varieties of interest, La Mayora has initiated a trial aimed at obtaining trees that produce mangoes with only pulp and no seed. Since the study has just commenced, several years will be required to see if seedless mangoes can be produced. La Mayora has been working for several years to obtain a variety of custard apple that produces seedless fruit and has launched a new variety of almost seedless custard apple.
In order to obtain a variety of seedless mango, the La Mayora subtropical fruit growing team, the head of which is the researcher Iñaki Hormaza, is working with diploid and triploid varieties.
In 1992, Indian researchers created a mango variety with a smaller, thinner seed, called Sindhu, from hybrids of the Ratna and Alphonso mango varieties - it is considered one of the best in terms of flavor. In 2011 a university planted the variety, obtaining fruit for the first time in 2014.
Source: Diario Sur