Submitted to: Temperate Tree Fruit Breeding
Publication Type: Book / chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/19/2007
Publication Date: 4/28/2008
Citation: Scorza, R., Hancock, J. 2008. Peach. In: Hancock, J., editor. Temperate Tree Fruit Breeding. New York: Springer. p. 265-298. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Peach and its smooth-skinned mutation nectarine are among the world’s most important fruit crops. Peaches rank second only to apples in the production of deciduous fruits. The worldwide production of peaches is now in excess of 15,000,000 tons. Traditionally, peaches have been the subject of intense breeding by mainly the public but also private breeding programs throughout the world. These programs have produced a wide array of varieties. The search for fruit quality and productivity has narrowed the germplasm base. It makes improvement of other important traits, such as disease and insect resistance, and resistance to environmental stress factors, such as heat, cold, flooding and drought, more difficult. At a time when new regulations demand the decrease of pesticide use, factors, such as changes in climate, cause dramatic shifts in pest populations and also increased drought and flood events. Under these circumstances, traditional genetic approaches will benefit from new genomic approaches to genetic improvement. Increased utilization of genetic resources complemented by techniques, such as marker-assisted selection and genetic engineering, will provide the tools necessary for a more rapid genetic change to meet the demands of changing environments but also the demands of consumers for higher quality, unique, and more nutritious fruit.