27 January 2023 News
From 13 to 17 February, we organise our annual Winter Leafy Days in Spain. Amid demo fields with dozens of familiar and new varieties, our breeders and colleagues will bring you up to date on the latest developments in leafy crops. The event is dedicated to emphasize our ‘power of leafy’ and is giving answers to three current topics: disease and pest control, year-round production and labour savings.
The Winter Leafy Days are an annual event for many who are involved in the variety selection for the cultivation and processing of leafy vegetables. After all the coronavirus problems of recent years, the event is a great opportunity to strengthen personal connections and to see and taste our products in person.
El Albujón, Murcia, in person. As market leader within this very varied product group, there’s also lots of news to discover this year. To provide a structure for the guided tours through the crops and varieties, three themes have been chosen that partly determine the variety selection, regardless of the cultivation area or method (outdoors, in greenhouses or vertical farms). “For all our partners in the supply chain, the earnings depend to a large extent on varieties’ resilience to pests and diseases, the ability to set up year-round cultivation programmes and the opportunity to save on labour costs”, says John Robert Johnson, Technical Sales Representative Leafy Crops at Enza Zaden UK.
Resistant, resilient varieties benefit the entire supply chain, not to mention the environment. John Robert Johnson: “Resistance breeding has been of paramount importance to us for years, and this is clearly reflected in the genetics of our varieties. In leafy vegetables, resistances to mildew and Bremia are particularly important. These fungi develop new physiological races quite easily, so it's an ongoing arms race. Many of our varieties are already resistant to the full range BI:16-37 EU, Fusarium and - in the case of spinach - Pe:1-19. This puts us ahead of other seed companies.” Spain’s host and Product Manager, Cayetano Fernández, explains: “Our breeders are at the forefront of cross-breeding resistances. And our local crop experts are familiar with cultivation strategies that support the plant’s own resilience. Both are needed in order to stay a step ahead of pests and diseases. This becomes even more urgent as it becomes increasingly difficult to protect crops using chemical agents.”
Thanks to the wide-ranging variety portfolio, we are the partner of choice for year-round cultivation programmes. That’s also the case when mechanisation and labour savings are important criteria. In that regard, Johnson notes: “Mechanical harvesting and smooth processing with little waste place high demands on the plants’ structure, sturdiness and uniformity. You can assess such properties better in the field than online or in a product catalogue.”
Interested parties from all over Europe are welcome to visit the Winter Leafy Days. Registering in advance is preferred because, during the Winter Leafy Days, we want to be able to offer each visitor a customised programme. This includes personal guidance from our sales and breeding teams.
The Winter Leafy Days take place daily from 13 to 17 February, at the branch in El Albujón, Murcia. You can register by e-mailing your own Enza Zaden sale representative or by contacting Giuseppina Inturrisi. See you at the Winter Leafy Days!