Within the next decade, the results of traditional and laboratory (GMO) research could begin to remove one of the most ferocious disease threats to California’s grape industry - Pierce’s disease vectored by the glassy-winged sharpshooter (GWSS) pest.
“We are almost there in bringing to market the first round of solutions for the Pierce’s disease problem,” said Robert Wynn, statewide coordinator for the Pierce’s Disease Control Program, administered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).
The technologies are now available to control Pierce’s disease and CDFA wants to commercialize the science for growers, Wynn told wine grape growers at the Allied Grape Growers annual meeting in Fresno, Calif.
Within 3-5 years, new cultivars developed through traditional breeding could be on the commercial market. Disease resistant cultivars developed using biotechnology methods (GMOs) could be available to growers about a decade later.