The University of Florida has released three tomato breeding lines with the hope they will provide commercial breeders with the basis for future virus resistance and quality fruit.

The Gainesville-based Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Cultivar Release Committee, in partnership with the Florida Foundation Seed Producers Inc., approved Fla. 8638B, Fla. 8624 and Fla. 8923 on Oct. 22, according to a news release.

Fla. 8923 shows resistance to tomato yellow leaf curl virus, whereas 8624 and 8638B provide resistance to yellow leaf curl virus and tomato mottle virus, all of which can reduce yields and fruit quality.

The varieties are the work of the university’s tomato breeding program led by professor Jay Scott and assistant professor Sam Hutton at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Balm.

The cultivar committee decided to release the breeding lines so seed companies can use them to develop improved varieties for Florida and the world.

The resistance genes from the new lines originated from a wild tomato species that Scott transferred into tomatoes using conventional techniques nearly 25 years ago.

Florida Foundation Seed Producers Inc. will seek non-exclusive licensees for the tomato lines, according to the release.