Thursday, July 5, 2012

Xi'an Jinpeng Intends to Lead Domestic Tomato Breeding

Xi'an Jinpeng Seed Co., Ltd. (Xi'an Jinpeng), a prominent tomato seed supplier in China, fully opened an R&D center in early 2012. The R&D center, located in the Modern Agriculture Demonstration Garden of Yangling City, Shaanxi Province, is committed to tomato research and commercialized breeding. When the construction of R&D center was launched in 2010, a new company named Shaanxi Jinpeng Seed Co., Ltd. was formally incorporated in Yangling City, with registered capital of USD1.58 million (RMB10 million), which acts as the special R&D department of Xi'an Jinpeng, according to CCM International’s June Issue of Seed China News.
As a private enterprise specialized in tomato breeding and seed production, Xi'an Jinpeng has been facing an increasingly intense competition in domestic tomato seed market, as more and more tomato varieties have been introduced by seed companies both at home and abroad. Relying on the R&D center, Xi'an Jinpeng intends to accelerate tomato breeding process and develop more tomato varieties with great competitiveness.
It is understood that Xi'an Jinpeng's R&D center is composed of laboratories of biotechnology, tomato pathology and tomato breeding, 50 tomato planting greenhouses with high standard, a tomato seed processing workshop and a seed vault with low temperature and humidity, totally covering an area of 6.53 ha. (98 mu). At present, tomato breeding experiments are conducted normally in the R&D center. The varieties and combinations on exhibition are attracting large number of vegetable growers, distributors and breeding experts from various places.

Xi'an Jinpeng was founded in 2001 by a tomato breeder: Li Xiaodong who acts as the company's general manager and also the director of Xi'an Emperor Institute of Vegetable which is a part of Xi'an Jinpeng. With a powerful R&D team led by Li Xiaodong, Xi'an Jinpeng has continuously developed a series of tomato varieties with good commodity and excellent resistance to relevant diseases and pests.
"Jinpeng 1", Xi'an Jinpeng's pink tomato variety with great tolerance for storage and transportation, has been well recognized by domestic growers. After being planted for over ten years, "Jinpeng 1" still occupies a high market share in northwestern and eastern areas.
"Jinpeng M6", another excellent pink tomato variety of Xi'an Jinpeng bred in 2008, presents a great resistance to Meloidogyne. In May 2011, "Jinpeng M6" obtained the appraisal of Crop Variety Approval Committee in Shaanxi Province. Revealed by Li Xiaodong, the planting area of "Jinpeng M6" at home has seen steady growth in recent years.
Eyeing the widespread tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TY), Xi'an Jinpeng has successfully cultivated some anti-TY pink tomato varieties since 2010, such as "Jinpeng 10" and "Jinpeng 11". With excellent resistance and fine commodity, Xi'an Jinpeng's anti-TY tomato varieties have been well recognized in the market.
"Our existing anti-TY tomato varieties are only achievements of transition," said Li Xiaodong, "and we shall take commodity improvement as the primary objective of tomato breeding: taking into account the disease and pest resistance under the premise of ensuring the commodity of tomato."
Mr. Li believes that there are almost no excellent pink tomato varieties at home which can perfectly combine TY resistance and good commodity mainly covering appearance, flavor and nutrition quality. In his opinion, numerous tomato varieties of domestic and foreign companies have been in a tangled warfare, none of which have occupied absolute advantage. However, Mr. Li considers that the status of tangled warfare would not last too long, in view of the increasing efforts of breeders in tomato variety improvement.
"Tomato growers have gained more and more experience for preventing and controlling TY, and thus the resistance to TY would not be so important for tomato breeding in future," said Mr. Li.
In course of development, Xi'an Jinpeng's biggest obstacle is the infringement from other illegal operators, rather than the great competitiveness of multinational seed companies. Some tomato seeds of Xi'an Jinpeng like "Jinpeng 1" and "Jinpeng M6" have suffered infringement in varying degrees, which has caused great loss to Xi'an Jinpeng. According to Mr. Li, the company wishes more protection over intellectual property rights from the government in future.
As for the competition between domestic and foreign companies, Mr. Li considers that it is also a mutual promotion. While crowding domestic seed players, multinational seed companies have brought abundant germplasm resources and advanced management concepts to domestic counterparts.

At present, Xi'an Jinpeng mainly markets tomato seeds in the north part of China. The company still has a weak development capability for the market of southern areas mainly covering Guangdong, Guangxi, Fujian and Hainan. Revealed by Mr. Li, Xi'an Jinpeng has not bred appropriate varieties for southern areas and it will increase corresponding R&D efforts to develop southern market. 

Source: Seed China News 1206

Content of Seed China News 1206:
MOA to promulgate Seed Ten-Year Development Plan within 2012
GM crops need further supervision in China
A vegetable seed and seedling research hub settled in Hubei
Hefei Fengle to expand corn seed business in Xinjiang
Performance differentiation appears in seed companies
Agricultural experts: wheat output would decrease in 2012
Bt cotton could enhance biocontrol services
Henan Qiule joints CAU to improve corn variety "Zhengdan 958"
Xi'an Jinpeng intends to lead domestic tomato breeding
Chinese researchers found a grain size, shape and quality gene in rice

Seed China News, a monthly publication issued by CCM International on 30th of every month, offers timely update and close follow-up of China’s seed industry dynamics, analyzes market data and finds out factors influencing market development

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