Researchers from Brazil’s Fundecitrus participated in the 14th International Citrus Congress held in Mersin, Turkey, Nov. 6–11. The event brought together participants from public and private research institutions, as well as the production and commercial sectors of citrus. Representatives from 28 countries participated in the congress, including the United States, South Africa, Australia, Israel and several countries in Europe.
Fundecitrus researchers Franklin Behlau, Geraldo Silva Jr. and Silvio Lopes, and postdoctoral fellows Deived Carvalho, Isabela Primiano and Rafaele Moreira attended the event. They gave lectures and exhibited research panels developed by Fundecitrus and its partners.
The Fundecitrus team also visited packinghouses and citrus orchards and learned about the main challenges of growing citrus in Turkey. “The congress addressed the various aspects of citrus growing, and the phytosanitary part was in evidence,” Behlau said.
Turkey has around 160,000 hectares of citrus, and an estimated production of 4 million tons per year. Of the total produced, 36% is tangerines and hybrids, 31% oranges, 27% lemons and 5% grapefruit. Production is mainly exported to Russia and other countries.
For Silva Jr., the event was essential to expand his network of contacts with other professionals, as well as to learn about innovations in the different areas of citriculture. “The main diseases that threaten Brazilian citrus growing, such as greening, black spot, leprosis, citrus canker and flower rot, do not affect orchards in Turkey,” Silva said. “However, citrus growers have had problems with dry blight, a disease caused by a fungus, mainly in lemon orchards, which is quarantined in Brazil.”
The event was organized by institutions and companies in Turkey. The next International Citrus Congress is scheduled for 2024 in South Korea.
Fundecitrus is an association maintained by citrus growers and juice manufacturers from the Brazilian state of São Paulo to foster the sustainable development of the citrus industry.