13 Jun 2022
Rijk Zwaan lettuce varieties have resistance against newest Fusarium race (Fol: 4)
Fusarium is a major threat in lettuce. The fungus can damage the lettuce via the root system in both protected and open-field crops, resulting in a loss of yield. In 2015, a new variant of Fusarium in lettuce, race 4 (Fol: 4), was identified in Europe. In May 2022, the International Seed Federation officially established a harmonised test protocol for claiming resistance to this race. Many of Rijk Zwaan’s existing lettuce varieties are resistant to the new variant of Fusarium.
New Fusarium race in Europe
The newest variant of Fusarium in lettuce (Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. Lactuacae) was first described by Giraldi et al in 2016. Since then, Fusarium race 4 has been discovered in many countries in Europe. It is not found on the world’s other continents.
Resistances in Rijk Zwaan lettuces
In our breeding programme we are continuously working on improving the traits of our lettuce varieties, including by developing resistances to new variants of plant diseases. “Fusarium is a big threat for lettuce growers all over the world. The newly defined test protocol confirms that many of our lettuce varieties are resistant against this new race of Fusarium,” comments Johan Schut, Breeding Manager Lettuce.
Rijk Zwaan crop specialists are happy to explain more about the company’s range of lettuce varieties and their resistances.
Rijk Zwaan is a strong advocate of an integral approach to combating plant diseases in order to reduce the use of chemical crop protection agents. Although resistant varieties play an important role in this, the company also advises the use of crop protection agents and hygiene measures to prevent new Fusarium variants from developing. Good hygiene practices such as removing crop residues and diseased plants can help to limit the spread of Fusarium in lettuce.
Rijk Zwaan demos in June
Rijk Zwaan’s Hydroponics Leaf and Outdoor demos are on the agenda again, showcasing our new vegetable varieties. Read the news item about our events in June.