Group acquires three blueberry licenses for varieties bred at the University of Georgia by Dr Scott NeSmith

Global Plant Genetics (GPG) has announced that it has made a “major blueberry investment”, purchasing the global licenses for three varieties.

Rupert Hargreaves GPG new varieties announcement video

Rupert Hargreaves announces the purchase of the three global licenses

The varieties in question are Sweet Duchess, Maverick, and Gladiator, described by GPG as ”three of the world’s most exciting blueberry varieties”.

They were bred by Dr Scott NeSmith, whose programme at the University of Georgia in the US is considered a leader in delivering yield, earliness, and flavour.

GPG confirmed that the deal was concluded in early March after a number of years of international evaluation of the varieties.

”We are seeing evergreen production on varieties such as Maverick producing an average of 4.78kg per plant in commercial plantations, 16 months after planting,” the group stated. ”This is simply outstanding and creates huge interest based on yield and flavour from major blueberry companies in low-chill/ evergreen growing regions.

”We strongly expect this variety to be competing in the top three blueberry varieties in the world in the next 3-5 years.

”Great flavour, size, and yield, are similarly experienced in the blueberry varieties Gladiator and Sweet Duchess,” GPG noted. ”The limitation to growth is the availability of plant material for all these varieties, however our international licence holders are working hard to overcome this.”

Rupert Hargreaves, co-owner of GPG, said that forward planning for those growers wanting access to the varieties would be crucial.