BerryWorld works in close collaboration with the Edward Vinson Soft Fruit Breeding Limited which was established in 1986 to develop new, superior eating quality strawberry varieties which may then be grown exclusively by BerryWorld Growers both in the UK and overseas. The strawberry breeding programme is the largest in Europe and currently plants 36,000 seedlings per annum and seedlings are divided between breeding sites in the UK and Spain.
The UK programme is focused on developing new varieties of Everbearers and Junebearers to be grown commercially in the UK by BerryWorld Growers;
Junebearers (short day types)
Produce fruit from buds formed the previous August. Traditionally fruits are produced for several weeks from mid May until the end of June For example Elsanta and Sonata.
The Spanish programme focuses on developing Southern European short day varieties to be grown commercially by BerryWorld growers in Spain and Morocco.
The most recent new varieties to come out of the strawberry breeding programme to which BerryWorld Growers have exclusive growing rights are Sweet Eve and Eves Delight in the UK and Viva Patricia in Spain and Morocco.
Everbearers produce fruit from May – October and flowering, and thereby fruit, production hinges on the specific length of daylight hours at those times of the year. For example Evie 2, Evie3, Sweet Eve, Eve's Delight and Everest
Raspberries, Blackberries and Blueberries
The BerryWorld Plus raspberry breeding programme was established in 2001 and has breeding sites in both the UK and Spain. Currently plants approximately 12,000 seedlings (a mix of floricane and primocane types) per annum. The main aim of the Raspberry Breeding programme is to develop superior eating quality raspberries with good yield which may then be grown exclusively by BerryWorld Growers both in the UK and overseas. The latest release to come out of the BerryWorld Plus Breeding Programme is Tulameen Plus.
The breeding of Blackberries and Blueberries is relatively new to the BerryWorld Plus Programme.
Seedlings in the Blackberry Breeding Program were assessed for the first time in 2010 and seedlings in the Blueberry Breeding program will be assessed for the first time in 2011. The main aim of the Blackberry Program is to develop new sweeter eating varieties. In 2010 5,000 seedlings were assessed and from this there have been several promising selections made.
In addition to the BerryWorld Plus Blueberry Breeding Program BerryWorld also has an exclusive relationship with the VBM Blueberry Breeding Program in South America form which there are some promising selections being made.