Vegetable Breeding Working Group (VGBR)

VGBR is part of the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS)

Minutes (2011 meeting)

  • Vegetable Breeding Working Group Business Meeting
  • American Society for Horticultural Science Annual Conference
  • Waikoloa, HI
  • 26 September 2011

Attendance. Beiquan Mou, Dilip Panthee, Kevin Crosby, Linda Wessel-Beaver, Michael Mazourek, Larry Robertson, Irwin Goldman, Byung-Soo Kim, John Scott, James Brewbaker.

General Business. Beiquan Mou (Chair, VBWG) opened the meeting by welcoming all participants in the meeting. He asked to introduce the attendee briefly by oneself. There were 10 attendees (see above).

Approval of minutes
Dr. Beiquan Mou (Chair, VBWG) called for approval of minutes from the 2010 Vegetable Breeding Working Group business meeting with any corrections indicated. There being no corrections, the minutes were unanimously approved.

VBWG sponsored event at this conference
Dr. Beiquan Mou informed all present that the workshop on “Breeding Vegetables for the Tropics” sponsored by the VBWG was sponsored success. It occurred today (Monday, September 26, 2011) from 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm, Kings 1. He informed the working group that there were more than 30 participants at the workshop, which was a very encouraging number.

2011 Vegetable Breeding Award of Excellence: James D. McCreight
The recipient of the 2011 Vegetable Breeding Award of Excellence was Dr. Jim McCreight. Dr. McCreight is Research Leader at USDA-ARS, Salinas, CA. Dr. McCreight was recognized for his excellent contribution to vegetable breeding particularly breeding cucurbits and leafy greens. His extensive research on these crops has provided excellent information on host resistance to a number of diseases as well as resistance gene identification that is being utilized by the scientific community at national and international levels. He discovered resistance to lettuce infectious yellows virus in melon and described the difficulties in selecting for resistance to this insect-transmitted virus. Dr. McCreight described several nuclear and extra-chromosomal mutants of melon, which added to the genetic knowledge base of melon. He and colleagues described a mechanism in white flowered gourd for resistance to sweet potato whitefly and identified sources of resistance to silverleaf whitefly in melon. His leadership in a germplasm collection expedition to India resulted in a 20% increase of the U.S. National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) melon collection. He also led teams to Turkmenistan and Africa. In team research, he first reported inheritance of isozyme and RAPD markers in melon and used them to study the relationships among the botanical varieties of melon. He has published several papers, of which more than two dozen are of special importance. VBWG is honored to recognize such a well accomplished breeder, congratulations Dr. McCreight! Dr. McCreight was unable to attend the ASHS meeting this year. Dr. Mou will present the certificate to him.

VBWG supported events in future meetings
The following topics were discussed for a VBWG sponsored colloquium or workshop for next year’s ASHS annual meeting to be held from July 31 to August 3, 2012 at Miami, FL.  One topic considered for the 2012 meeting was:

  1. Breeding vegetables and fruits for nutritional improvement

Potential topics for future meetings are:

  1. Breeding status of vegetable crops: Now and 20 years later
  2. Status of breeding to feed international hunger
  3. Vegetable seed production

After a lively discussion, it was decided that we will submit a proposal for a colloquium. If it does not get funded, we will consider the same topic for a workshop. Regarding topics for the colloquium, “Breeding vegetables and fruits for nutritional improvement” will be pursued in collaboration with the Fruit Breeding Working Group.

Election of new officers: Secretary elect needed
Dr. Michael Mazourek, Vegetable Breeder at Cornell University, NY was nominated to be the new secretary of the working group. The members present unanimously voted to elect Michael to this position. Congratulations Michael!

Other issues of interest

  • People in the plant breeding community are preparing a comprehensive list of vegetable breeders working in the public and private sector in the US. This was deemed necessary to develop an effective plant breeding networking. For this effort, a list from National Association of Plant Breeders (NAPB) might provide a good start.

New 2012 officers are:

  • Dr. Dilip R. Panthee, Chair
  • Dr. Mark W. Farnham, Chair-elect
  • Dr. Michael Mazourek, Secretary

There being no further points for discussion, the Chair of the committee adjourned the meeting.

Prepared by Dilip Panthee.

Web site for our working group: