1990: The Board of Directors develops a strategy to expand its outreach programs by decentralizing some research activities to regional centers, and places greater emphasis on biotechnology and other forms of upstream research.
1990: After 12 years of operation, the Center’s tomato breeding program had released 67 improved fresh market, processing and cherry tomato cultivars in 28 countries, from Samoa and Papua New Guinea to Saudi Arabia and Sri Lanka.
1991: The AVRDC Library provides access to a collection of more than 14,000 titles, 1311 journals and 31,000 crop production documents to researchers worldwide.
1991: The South Asian Vegetable Research Network (SAVERNET) organizes collaborative research in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
1992: Asian Regional Center set up to provide training in vegetable production and research on the campus of Kasetsart University, Kamphaeng Saen, Thailand.
1992: Regional Center for Africa opens in Tanzania. CONVERDS, the Collaborative Network for Vegetable Research and Development in the Southern Africa Development Council Region, is established to coordinate research activities in Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
1993: Onion, garlic and shallot are widely grown in the tropics, but the low productivity of these crops under tropical conditions prompts AVRDC to begin an intensive allium improvement program.
1993: Tomato breeders begin experiments with embryo culture to transfer desirable traits for disease resistance from wild tomato relatives to standard tomato lines.
1994: Ongoing experiments evaluate grafting tomato scions onto tomato or eggplant rootstocks tolerant to waterlogging and soil-borne diseases.
1994: Home garden research focuses on developing garden models for drylands, wetlands, and production without pesticides.
1995: Methodologies established and more than 25,000 chemical composition analyses conducted to assess the nutritional quality of vegetable crops.
1995: AVRDC researchers demonstrate that the iron in some vegetables can be more easily absorbed by the body when the vegetables are cooked.
1996: The first issue of the Center’s Tropical Vegetable Information Service (TVIS) Newsletter is distributed, to augment the TVIS project launched in 1984. Under TVIS, staff developed information databases, and the AVRDC Library served as a clearinghouse for the collection and exchange of vegetable research. The Center’s first website went online in 1996.
1996: Research activities in parts of Southeast Asia organized under CLVNET, the Collaborative Vegetable Research and Development Network for Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.
1997: The Center’s integrated pest management research for crucifers, primarily focused on measures to control diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella), expands to include armyworms (Spodoptera exigua and S. litura, and thrips (Thrips tabaci).
1997: In field trials, AVRDC tomato lines are found to be resistant to fusarium wilt in eastern and southern Africa, and also outyield local varieties Marglobe and Moneymaker. The improved tomato cultivars are released as ‘Tanya’ and ‘Tengeru 97’.
1998: Off-season vegetable production becomes part of the Center’s strategy to diversify cereal cropping systems, give farmers more production choices, and provide consumers with a steadier supply of vegetables.
1998: The Center hosts an international conference on peri-urban vegetable production in the Asia-Pacific region in the 21st century.
1999: AVRDC named the lead research center in the international battle against whitefly (Bemisia tabaci), a pest responsible for billions of dollars of damage to a range of food crops, mostly by spreading viruses that reduce crop yield and quality.
1999: Field testing at AVRDC headquarters and collaborative trials across South Asia show eggplant landrace EG058 resists the fruit and shoot borer (Leucinodes orbonalis). Researchers begin transferring the resistance into commercial eggplant varieties.