Only a minor share of the consumed apples in Nordic countries are domestically produced. Therefore, minimal post-harvest losses are critical to better satisfy consumers’ demand for locally produced fruit and to improve growers’ economy. Text: Larisa Gustavsson
Researchers, stakeholders and decision makers has gathered during the last two years, to exchange and assemble knowledge and pave the way for efficient collaboration on storage losses.
The common strategic goal has been to minimize post-harvest losses due to storage decay. To achieve that, the network Nordic Apple Networkbrought together researchers and stakeholders in two informative meetings and moved forward in our understanding of important pre- and post-harvest factors leading to development of storage rots.
This has also had an immediate impact, since some ideas for new research projects were developed. For example:
• Which are the main causes for postharvest losses?
• Physiological disorders – conditions on which these are occurring
• Fungal diseases – how to identify them?
A platform for a long-term collaboration involving researchers and the apple industries in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland has been built.
Symtoms and defence reactions were in focus of the first network meeting of the NKJ-funded Nordic Apple Network May 18-19, 2021.
First on the agenda was an update on the current situation of fruit quality after storage and storage losses, presented by the representatives from the industry from all four participating countries. This update was followed by presentations of the ongoing research on storage conditions, storage disorders and storage diseases.
The presentations were accompanied by fruitful discussions and exchange of knowledge, regarding current problems as well as research needs, with emphasis on fruit quality loss, storage rots and physiological decay. Special attention was given to the diversity of the disease- and disorder symptoms, pathogens and their epidemiology and to the diversity of the defence reactions among cultivars. The participants stressed the importance of good pre-harvest practices for reducing post-harvest losses. Future collaborations, funding opportunities and the contents of the next workshop were also discussed.
The meeting was hosted by SLU and took place online where 35 participants, representing research, growers, advisory services, packing houses and authorities exchanged their knowledge and experiences.
The network unites participants from Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden, and addresses the issue of post-harvest losses. The focus is on how to achieve improved plant health via better knowledge of epidemiology, novel monitoring tools, knowledge of cultivar pre- and postharvest physiology, disease resistance, and cultivation practices.