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A Newly Developed Chestnut Breed 'Mipung' Emerging

A Newly Developed Chestnut Breed 'Mipung' Emerging as the Next Big Thing

Recently the Korean Forest Research Institute (KFRI) has developed a new chestnut breed called 'Mipung' (literally 'breeze' in Korean language) that produces plump and delicious chestnuts of a high quality. The new chestnut is likely to be the next big export item since it is tasty and large in size and altogether eminently marketable.

According to an official from the KFRI, the research team there has created the new brand using the native chestnut tree that accords with the 'Framework to Protect New Plant Varieties' that will take effect in 2008.

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A researcher from the KFRI stressed, "Chestnuts of this newly developed breed will become a top brand since it is marketable and suitable for manufacturing. It will also definitely contribute to an increased competitiveness in the global market."
The KFRI will distribute the new breed to farmers in 2008 when it completes the official procedures by registering it on the new breed list.

The chestnut has been the chief export item in the agricultural sector since back in the mid-90's when the amount of chestnuts exported then reached about 100 million. However, its competitiveness in overseas markets is faltering in the repercussions of Free Trade Agreements (FTA) within the framework of the WTO. Against this backdrop, this next big thing is urgently needed to increase its competitiveness.

Park Sung Eun  parkse@agrinet.co.kr

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