CherryTech: Calcium and Potassium Essential for Cherry Production

CherryTech: Calcium and Potassium Essential for Cherry Production

The conference will bring together the most relevant industry experts in Chile, the world´s largest cherry exporter. The event will feature three master classes and three forums on varietal replacement, nutrition, and post-harvest.

There is just over a month left until the first edition of CherryTech, the largest cherry technical event in Chile, which will take place on June 29th at the Sun Monticello Conference Center, 60 km from Santiago.

The second forum is titled “Calcium and Potassium: Their Fundamental Role in Productive Potential, Quality, and Fruit Condition” and will be moderated by Carlos Tapia, a specialist advisor in cherry production, Founder and Technical Director of Avium.

“Among the essential nutrients for cherry production, in search of productive potential and enhancing quality, it is always of interest to be very attentive to the role of calcium and potassium as two highly relevant nutrients to achieve not only maximized yields but also the overall condition and quality of the fruit. That is why we want to take a moment together with a panel of experts in the field of nutrition and analyze the fundamental role that these two nutrients play, also considering the essence of our cherry production as an exporting country of this species, which implies having fruit of the highest quality capable of withstanding long travel times and arriving at the destination in the best possible condition,” said the specialist advisor in cherry production.

Talking about nutrition

The panel, led by Carlos Tapia, will include the participation of four experts in the field: José Ignacio Covarrubias, Master in Agricultural Sciences, Doctor in Fruit Trees, and nutrition specialist at the University of Chile; Rodrigo Ortega, specialist in soil fertility, plant nutrition, and precision agriculture, academic at the Federico Santa María University, Concepción; Valeria Lepe, specialist advisor in nutrition of fruit species, member of GTT Frutales & Gestión and president of Pomanova; Óscar Carrasco, specialist advisor in agriculture, orchard management researcher, and professor at the University of Chile.

“My interest in participating in this meeting stems from my role as a cherry production advisor for several years, during which I have witnessed the evolution of the cultivation firsthand, including changes in production systems, such as varieties, rootstocks, training systems, advances in irrigation and nutrition technologies, protection systems (frost, rain), and an explosive increase in the cultivation area in new production zones (north and south), seeking to expand the fruit supply throughout the season. Nutritional management has evolved intensely in parallel with the need to have increasingly better-quality fruit, capable of reaching the market in the best conditions for consumers, and not losing the reputation that has taken so long to build,” said Óscar Carrasco.

Valeria Lepe, highlighted CherryTech as an important occasion to address key issues in cherry production. “It will be an opportunity to bring together the Chilean cherry production industry in a magnitude and world-class event, with the aim of addressing highly relevant topics and unifying criteria in some key management practices to achieve fruit with very high quality and size standards required to remain competitive in global markets. Since the differentiating factor will continue to be the quality of the final product, as national production estimates continue to increase. The comprehensive concept of balanced nutrition is the starting point, always with a programmatic approach to achieve production objectives and fruit quality,” anticipated the specialist.

José Ignacio Covarrubias expressed: “It is very positive to bring together the different sectors that make up the cherry industry, including producers, farmers, exporters, advisors, and academia, understanding different perspectives, and in that way, learn and enhance the industry. It is an honour for me to share a forum with such distinguished experts who are specialists in mineral nutrition. In this case, the nutrition forum will focus on two minerals that are extraordinarily relevant for the qualitative characteristics and properties of cherries. Today, good quality is an essential requirement for exportation. Production that is not accompanied by quality ultimately does not fare well in the cherry market, so it is something that is extremely significant.”

Finally, specialist Rodrigo Ortega, spoke about the need to further investigate and explore the topic of nutrition and its different alternatives, considering that the industry faces the challenges of climate change and high production costs.

“We will participate in a conversation about cherry nutrition with an emphasis on calcium nutrition, its effects on soil quality, yields, and fruit quality. The topic is highly relevant because, in a context of climate change and high input costs, it is necessary to generate integrated soil and cherry nutrition management strategies. These strategies will allow for better adaptation and greater tolerance to biotic and abiotic stress to achieve productive objectives of good yields and high quality, with high production efficiency,” concluded the professor.

The forums will take place after each of the three master classes at CherryTech, which will be conducted by the experts Carlos Tapia, Jordi Casas, and Walter Masman. Tickets for the event are already available and can be purchased by emailing


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