In partnership with Coimbra Superior School of Agriculture (ESAC - Escola Superior Agrária de Coimbra) and Portuguese Medronho Cooperative (CPM - Cooperativa Portuguesa de Medronho), REN - Redes Energéticas Nacionais published the Strawberry Tree Manual. A book communicating the possibilities of this species as a fruit with high potential in the agribusiness industry, in cosmetics and as a medicinal or ornamental product.
This is the second edition of a manual that shows producers and agricultural landowners the plant's characterization and its cultivation, covering installation, maintenance, cultivation practices and fruit harvesting.
For João Gaspar, head of REN's Easements and Assets area, this manual is an important tool for the landowners we contact, for the promotion of a species that we include in the management of the vegetation in the corridors of the power transmission lines, to extend the maintenance periods and to enable a higher profitability for the landowners'. In addition to these advantages, 'we promote, at the same time, the defence of the forest against fires', he also pointed out.
For Carlos Fonseca, Chairman of CPM, 'this work is timely and essential. Timely because the demand for information about the cultivation of the strawberry tree is growing in Portugal and this work closes that informational gap. Crucial because this manual condensed the current knowledge about the cultivation of the strawberry tree, being predominantly technical and practical in nature, as a result of the fruitful partnership between academia, CPM and the producers of strawberry tree from across the country'.
For Filomena Garcia, from ESAC, 'this Manual is a milestone in the study of cultivation and in the dissemination of knowledge. Thanks to the financial support obtained through projects (ProDeR, FCT) and to the interaction between R&D teams and producers (Associations), it was possible to meet the basic needs of the producers and technicians. However, there is still a long way to go in addressing the diverse cultivation environments and their potential for transformation and enhancement'.
The Strawberry Tree Manual also comes from the interaction between REN, CPM, ESAC, multiple R&D institutions, associations and companies around the Strawberry Tree Sector.