Fruit appearance is critical in the modern marketplace and new cultivars need to be both attractive and distinctive to compete successfully. There is a focus on combining attractive colours and shapes with high eating quality. Furthermore, pears are often an impulse purchase, suggesting cosmetic qualities such as shape, skin colour and being blemish free are a major factor in triggering purchase decisions.
PIQA® fruits have a low susceptibility to handling marks known as scuffing, which can affect pears’ appearance during harvesting, packing and shipping, and be promulgated by consumers touching the fruit – especially if packed following cold storage. Scuff resistance has been identified and incorporated throughout the breeding programme.