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From a study of the University of Pisa to the production of the 'SuperBio' tomato

University of Pisa will collaborate with a nursery farm for the production of tomato plantlets 'SuperBio'

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pomodoro rosso coverFrom research laboratories to the table. The Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment of the University of Pisa made an agreement with the nursery farm l'Ortofruttifero, in San Giuliano Terme, Pisa, for the production of 10,000 plantlets of tomato "SuperBio" in 2015, and 70,000 in 2016.
The tomato "SuperBio" has been conceived after a multidisciplinary study of the University of Pisa, coordinated by prof. Manuela Giovannetti (photo), carried out by scientists from Agriculture, Medicine and Biology sectors and published on the international scientific journal "British Journal of Nutrition" in 2012.
Prof. Giovannetti, now the director of the Interdepartmental Research Center Nutrafood-Nutraceuticals and Food for Health, explains "Our research showed that cultivation methods may affect food nutraceutical value. Indeed, the concentration of phytochemicals, molecules produced by plants which have important protective and preventive properties against diverse human diseases, may increase when plants are grown together with beneficial microrganisms which establish with them a special type of symbiosis called "mycorrhiza".
Prof Manuela Giovannetti DiRETTORE NUTRAFOODThe research, carried out in the laboratories of the University of Pisa, showed that tomato fruits produced by mycorrhizal plants (i. e. plants living in association with beneficial symbionts) contain higher concentrations of lycopene (+18.5%), calcium (+15%), potassium (+11%), phosphorus (+60%) and zinc (+28%), compared with traditionally grown tomatoes.
"Tomatoes produced by biologically grown plants inoculated with their symbiotic microrganisms – concluded Manuela Giovannetti – showed also a higher antiestrogenic power, and represent an example of ecological and sustainable food production, able to reduce the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, obtaining safe and high quality food, which is an important societal issue strongly demanded by both consumers and producers".

  • 12 February 2015

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