Panama is set to become a citrus exporter in the next few years as 29 germplasms have been unveiled as part of a genetic modification programme backed by the University of California, Riverside, the US department of agriculture and Central American regional plant and animal health body OIRSA.

The genetic material addresses the issues of disease and pest resistance as well as higher yields per hectare in orange, easy-peel and lime varieties as well as smaller more productive trees. Panamanian authorities will oversee distribution of the plants through certified nurseries.