Vegetable breeders, Enza Zaden, have found a solution for tomato growers to beat the devastating Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus (ToBRFV). Their tomato breeding team has identified the gene that provides high resistance to the worldwide rapidly spreading virus, a major breakthrough claim the company.
Sergio de la Fuente van Bentem, plant pathology researcher at Enza Zaden says, “We know there’s a lot at stake for our customers and that’s why our company has worked very hard to find a solution. Now that we have discovered the answer, we keep on working hard to develop tomato varieties that are highly ToBRFV resistant. We expect to have these ready in the coming years.”
The company’s researchers believe this gene is like no other currently known and offers “high resistance” to ToBRFV, also called tobamo after its genus.
With this innovation, the introduction of ToBRFV resistance will potentially secure production for the tomato industry, from large multinationals through to smallholder farmers who all cultivate what is currently the most traded vegetable internationally.