ABC Rural By Matt Brann
Posted about 3 hours ago
Researchers have sequenced the genome of Australia's most popular mango, the Kensington Pride, unlocking the path to mango traits most desired by consumers and growers.
Speaking to ABC Rural at the International Mango Symposium in Darwin this week, Dr Ian Bally from the Queensland Department of Agriculture, said finding out what "made mangoes tick" was an important step for the mango industry.
"The sequencing has been completed and now the task is to start interpreting that and start finding useful genes within that long sequence that we can identify and use in our breeding programs to get the traits we're looking for," he said.
"For mango growers it's good news, because it means their crop is being better understood.
"Scientists working on the crop will have better information about how mangoes work and be able to more rapidly breed new varieties because we've got more information and better understand how the physiology works.
"For consumers, this means that mangoes which come in the future will be better quality."
00:00 AUDIO: NT Country Hour coverage of the International Mango Symposium (ABC Rural)
Asked if mapping the genome of the Kensington Pride (KP) and developing new varieties from the information could one day mean the demise of the much-loved KP variety, Dr. Bally said he "was sure Kensington Pride mangoes will always be on the shelf".
"But we will also have several other varieties that not only are great eating for consumers, but have great production characteristics for farmers," Dr. Bally said.
Other traits of interest to researchers include disease resistance, fruit colour, fruit ripening, tree physiology and tree height.