CleanFruit – Standardization of innovative pest control strategies to produce zero residue fruit for baby food and other fruit produce

Fruit crop protection is heavily dependent on chemical pesticides. Fruit processors need fruit free from pesticides for baby food and other specialized products.

Fruit quality and safety could benefit from standardized production under schemes free from chemical pesticides. The aim of CleanFruit is to develop and promote standardized practical strategies for fruit crop protection, based on new and existing biological pesticides (i.e. beneficials and microbials), commercial pollinators, and innovative pest detection tools. A holistic approach permits the evaluation of the impact of innovative and sustainable crop protection strategies on pest control, pollination, yield, costs, post-harvest quality and health of fruit, storage and processing. Strawberry and apple cultivations are the selected model crops. Sustainable and innovative prevention, monitoring (LAMP detection) and control tools are adopted in commercial fields of strawberry and apple, located in Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and UK. The farmer acceptance of the new technologies and the consumer behaviour towards fruit and fruit-derived products free from chemical pesticides are analysed. The dissemination of the results involves farmers, consumers and other stakeholders of the fruit value-chain. The project outcome is a standardized pest control package that supports zero-residue crop production, which has been tested for delivery of clean crops, grower acceptance and wider ecological, economic and social benefits.

Project Leadership: Davide Carmelo Spadaro,  University of Turin

Contact details: davide.spadaro@unito.it

Participating organisations: