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Unità di ricerca per la frutticoltura (FRF)

Headquarter - FORLI'
Web site:
Unità di ricerca per la frutticoltura (FRF)
La Canapona 1bis
47122 - FORLI'
Tel: +39-0543-89428 - Fax: +39-0543-89077

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The Fruit Research Unit of Forlì ( CRA-FRF) dates back at 1872, when with the 4th January decree enacted by the king Vittorio Emanuele II, the Experimental Agriculture Station of Forlì was established at the Technical Institute in Palazzo della Missione, located in Piazza Morgagni, where the Province head offices are currently set. With the 5th August 1910 Royal Decree, the Experimental Agriculture Station turned into the Independent Laboratory of Agricultural Chemistry, which started to work on the 1st of April 1911.

Thanks to its main task of controlling all the substances directly or indirectly useful to agriculture, the Laboratory gained immediately a great importance at a national level.

With D.P.R. 1318, issued on the 23rd November 1967, the Laboratory turned into the Section of the Experimental Institute for Fruit Research of Rome.

In 2007, with the CRA internal re-organization plan, the Section turned into the Fruit Research Unit.




CRA-FRF carries out a research breeding activity for fruit variety innovation improving the agro-pomological traits and the resistance to the main biotic and abiotic adversities, evaluating new varieties and rootstocks, preserving and characterising the local traditional fruit germplasm and valorising the best genetic resources.



In Magliano (Forlì, Lat. 4° 13’ N; Long.12° 3’ E,34m asl), CRA-FRF has an experimental farm of about 40 cultivated hectares equipped with greenhouses and facilities for fruit and agronomic experimentation.

CRA-FRF has also laboratories fully equipped to carry out genetic, genomic, biochemical and physiological studies and the analysis of fruit quality traits.


CRA-FRF is carrying out experimentation and research activities on the main fruit crop species cultivated in Northern areas (cherry, apple, pear, peach and plum) and, on strawberry adapted to Northern and Southern areas. The activity mainly aims at the variety innovation: it carries out genetic variety studies and programs for fruit breeding and variety selection, using traditional techniques, sustained by genomic and proteomic tools to increase yield, fruit quality traits and minimise the negative effects of biotic and environmental factors. It also carries out agronomic and nutritional studies on trees and on other aspects of cropping techniques in order to support a sustainable environmentally friendly fruit production.

CRA-FRF studies the fruit quality and nutraceutical value during the harvest and the post-harvest (simulating consumption times). The studies on strawberry are also extended to the plant propagation system and to support plant certification processes in the nursery activities.

Although the CRA-FRF research activity results mainly concern to improve the fruit industry of the North of Italy, especially of the Emilia-Romagna region, they often have a national effect, thanks to both the single activity setting and the high activity coordination with other CRA Centres and Units and with the main Italian Scientific Institutions.

The innovation of the strategy adopted by CRA-FRF is remarkable in many research activities. First, it has been necessary to fully understand which were the fruit industry research needs, especially Northern Italy ones. CRA-FRF comes to some agreements with big productive and commercial grower organisations – final users of our studies – on some common research activities aiming at variety innovation. These agreements have rapidly given excellent results. These organisations – joint-financiers of these research programs - have gained the role of final tester of the innovation involving their commercial expertise apart from those essentially agronomic. This has directed CRA-FRF research mostly to final products (new varieties) which have rapidly spread, concretely improving the initial situations.

The growth of Italian Grower Organisms is also made by proposing genetic innovations in an exclusive or very controlled way on the goods put on the market in order to have a more efficient marketing strategy.

Therefore, the fruit variety innovation is the main feature of CRA-FRF research activity. The yearly incomes from the royalties mainly paid by Italian producers, but also European and American ones who growing CRA-FRF varieties, represent an important source of financial support capable to fill the gaps of staff and the lack of working and refunding of the research.
Other activities

CRA-FRF coordinates and pursues many activities with private organisms through the drawing up of proper Agreements:

- Phytosanitary Service – Emilia-Romagna Region – techno-scientific activities supporting the regional Phytosanitary Service for the implementation of genetic-sanitary certification programs strawberry plants.

- Raggi Vivai, Cesena – Production of pre-basic and basic certified strawberry plants.

- Veneto Agricoltura, Legnano (PD) – Phenotypic characterization and genetic controls on peach and nectarine varieties.

- Apo Scaligera di Verona – The production of certified strawberry plants in Veneto.


VARIETIES REGISTERED AND RELEASED (*patent still valid in 2011)


Apple: Forum (1992), Superstayman (1999), Forlady* (2007)


Pear: Tosca (1993), Carmen*, Norma*, Turandot* (2000), Aida*, Bohème* (2005), Falstaff (2012)


Peach: Alba (1993), Bea (1993), Crizia* (2000), Aliblanca* (2004), Alipersiè* (2004), Alirosada* (2004), Alired (2003)


Nectarine: Neve* (2000) Alice-col (2003), Alitop (2004)*


Flat peach: Platiforone* (2010), Platifortwo*(2010)


Plum: Liablù (2003)


Strawberry:Addie, Brio, Cesena, Dana (1982); Etna, Ferrara, Gea (1986);  Idea*, Linda (1991); Don, Miss*, Nike (1993); Egla, Clea, Teodora (1994); Onda*, Paros* (1998); Patty*,  Granda (1999); Demetra, Rubea, Irma*, Queen Elisa*, Adria*, Sveva* (2003); Dora*, Eva* (2004); Record*, Sugar Lia (2006)*; Nora*, Kilo*, Palatina*, Argentera*, Tecla*, Vale*, Unica*, Zeta* (2008); Pircinque* (2010); Garda* (2012); Brilla*, Jonica* (2013);


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freccina Expression of interest for the nectarine variety called “ALICE COL”
freccina Expression of Interest strawberry cultivar "JONICA"
freccina Expression of interest GARDA
freccina Expression of interest for strawberry cultivar "Garda"
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