Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Black To The Future

The ever-popular blackcurrant may hold another key in the quest for eternal youth, thanks to its anti-oxidant properties.

Blackcurrant growers in New Zealand, dotted around the Nelson, Marlborough, Canterbury and Southland areas, are waiting eagerly for the results from a three year research programme being carried out by the industry body, Blackcurrants NZ (BCNZ) and HortResearch.

According to Ian Turk, product manager for BCNZ, laboratory research at Tufts University in Boston suggests that blackcurrants (and blueberries) are very high in anti-oxidants and compounds with so-called anti-ageing properties and this has been a major factor in increased demand for blackcurrants.

He says local research into at how those blackcurrant compounds relate to varieties unique to New Zealand will benefit both growers and consumers. It will also identify what it will mean for the industry’s future as demand for the fruit increases.

BCNZ received funding from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology through its Grants for Private Sector Research and Development scheme (GPSRD) to carry out the research programme.

Mr Turk says the results could provide strong pointers for the whole industry in terms of developing new varieties for New Zealand growing conditions, while retaining the most beneficial compounds identified by the research.

The research programme will help expand the existing breeding programme as well as develop pest and disease control options that are less reliant on chemicals and focus more on controls that will contribute to making the industry pesticide residue free.

“We hope to find some answers to the gall mite, which is the biggest pest problem for the New Zealand blackcurrant industry,” says Mr Turk. “We expect that some form of biological control may be appropriate.”

BCNZ represents New Zealand’s commercially-operated blackcurrant industry, which exports around 3,500 tonnes each year (around 80% of the crop). The majority ends up as concentrate for blackcurrant drinks or other food products.

The organisation’s R&D programme has a number of outcomes, with one of the most exciting being the alleged health benefits. If these are proven, says Mr Turk, it will boost demand for blackcurrants as a health food product.

-ends-


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Onetai Station: Overseas Investment Office Puts Ceol & Muir On Notice

The Overseas Investment Office (OIO) has issued a formal warning to Ceol & Muir and its owners, Argentinian brothers Rafael and Federico Grozovsky, for failing to provide complete and accurate information when they applied to buy Onetai Station in 2013. More>>

ALSO:

Tomorrow, The UN: Feds President Takes Reins At World Farming Body

Federated Farmers president Dr William Rolleston has been appointed acting president of the World Farmers’ Organisation (WFO) at a meeting in Geneva overnight. More>>

ALSO:

I Sing The Highway Electric: Charge Net NZ To Connect New Zealand

BMW is turning Middle Earth electric after today announcing a substantial contribution to the charging network Charge Net NZ. This landmark partnership will enable Kiwis to drive their electric vehicles (EVs) right across New Zealand through the installation of a fast charging highway stretching from Kaitaia to Invercargill. More>>

ALSO:

Watch This Space: Mahia Rocket Lab Launch Site Officially Opened

Economic Development Minster Steven Joyce today opened New Zealand’s first orbital launch site, Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1, on the Mahia Peninsula on the North Island’s east coast. More>>

Earlier:

Marketing Rocks!
Ig Nobel Award Winners Assess The Personality Of Rocks

A Massey University marketing lecturer has received the 2016 Ig Nobel Prize for economics for a research project that asked university students to describe the “brand personalities” of three rocks. More>>

ALSO:

Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news