In Brief items for FRESH
Tomato is India’s second most important vegetable crop, next to potato. And now ‘Arka Rakshak’, a new F1 fresh market and processing tomato hybrid with resistance to three major tomato diseases, is available for farmers eager to supply India’s growing demand. The variety was developed by the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR) by crossing one of their advanced breeding lines with an advanced breeding line sourced from the World Vegetable Center. Tomato leaf curl virus, bacterial wilt and early blight are among the most difficult tomato diseases to manage as there are no chemical treatments available to stop their spread. Building resistance into a variety is the most effective -- and cost-effective -- approach to tomato disease management. ‘Arka Rakshak’ produces medium to large (80-100 g), deep red, very firm fruits with good keeping quality (15-20 days) and transportability. Farmers can expect yields of 90-100 t/ha. WorldVeg provides the important breeding materials partners need to produce vigorous, pest-and disease-resistant varieties with tolerance to heat, drought, flooding and other environmental conditions farmers typically encounter in the field. Congratulations to IIHR!