In the Field with Glen Bradford: Mobile Version

Uploaded by KingsburgOrchards on 17.10.2012

G: Hi I'm Glen Bradford; I'm part owner in a genetic plant breeding business
Bradford Farms and also part owner of BQ Genetics. From both companies
we develop new varieties of peaches, plums and nectarines,
cherries and apricots. We have been in the business since 1981
and we have developed over 200 new varieties primarily for the Central Valley of California,
and ultimately to foreign countries in the world with Mediterranean climates.
H: What is the natural history of plant propagation?
G: Okay, Genetic plant breeding and plant propagation has been going on primarily for
the last 100 years as far as the development of new varieties. It started back with
Luther Burbank in 1930s to 40s. He developed the Santa Rosa plum, which most
people still remember the Santa Rosa plum and you see it in stores still.
That was the first - he was basically the father of genetic plant breeding.
From him, the next generation would've been Grant Merle and Fred Anderson.
Those two took over the ideas of Luther Burbank, and developed
nectarine and peach varieties and some plum through their generations,
and its Fred Anderson's program is what my dad and I purchased to continue their breeding.
H: How do you develop new varieties?
G: We choose the parent - the seed parent - of the variety and we also choose the pollen parent,
so it is a selective breeding process. We select the varieties to choose as the parents
as things that have good qualities and we try to take two things that have outstanding qualities
and cross them together to get new varieties.
Bradford Farms does not do any genetic modification of the varieties.
We're selective breeding in the natural state.
We do our crossing outside with pollen by hand or with bees.
And we don't do any genetic modification of our varieties.
H: How many new varieties do you develop every year?
G: Our program does 25,000 hybrids a year.
Out of that, though, only about 1 out of 1,000 becomes a commercial variety.
So the odds are 1,000 to 1 against us and we do 25,000 a year.
H: How have you enjoyed your relationship with Kingsburg Orchards?
G: Working with Kingsburg Orchards for us has been a real blessing.
We have gone from downsizing to increasing our size now with Kingsburg Orchards.
The people we work with and everything has been great and
it has motivated me to want to stay in here another 10 or 20 years.