The History of Pineapple Improvement

  • Garth M. SanewskiEmail author
Part of the Plant Genetics and Genomics: Crops and Models book series (PGG, volume 22)


Man has been directing the genome of pineapple for a very long time. There is some evidence to suggest the domestication process started around 6000 years ago. The methods for breeding have of course changed considerably from the earliest times of pineapple domestication, but we still are seeking much the same goals. So much so that one of the cultivars to emerge from that early domestication, ‘Smooth Cayenne’, is still the predominant processing pineapple worldwide. The most modern pineapple genotypes today are only about eight generations removed from the early pre-Columbian village cultivars. These early pre-Columbian cultivars have in fact been the source of genetics for most pineapple breeding programs. There has been little effort to incorporate wild genetics into modern pineapple. There is in fact little need given the substantial level of heterozygosity that domestic pineapple exhibits. The high level of heterozygosity in pineapple has both been a great source of diversity for breeders and also a major bottleneck in progress. Almost all modern approaches to genome manipulation or breeding have been attempted in pineapple to overcome the problems associated with high heterozygosity including inbreeding, ploidy manipulation, mutation breeding and gene modification. Only gene editing and marker-assisted breeding have yet to make their impact in pineapple. This chapter looks at the history of pineapple breeding, the approaches used and lessons learnt in the hope we build on their successes to provide the world with more examples of the great diversity in pineapple.


Ananas Breeding Domestication Heterozygosity Pineapple 


  1. Antoli MF, Strobeck C (2012) The population genetics of somatic mutation in plants. Am Nat 126(1):52–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Benega R, Cisneros A, Martinez J, Arias E, Daquinta M, Hidalgo M, Isidron M (1998) Brief review of some methods to obtain haploid plants. Proceedings of the 3rd International Pineapple Symposium. p 15Google Scholar
  3. Benega R, Isidron M, Arias E, Cisneros A, Martinez J, Companioni L, Borroto C (1997) Plant regeneration from pineapple ovules (Ananas comosus (L.) Merr.). Proceedings of the 2nd International Pineapple Symposium, Trois-Ilets, Martinique, 20–24 February 1995Google Scholar
  4. Benega R, Isidron M, Cisneros A, Arias E, Daquinta M, Companioni L, Martinez J (1996) Induction of callus in pineapple anthers. Cultivos Tropicales 17(1):72–74Google Scholar
  5. Benega R, Viciedo L, Martinez J, Castillo E, Cisneros A, Romero M, Isidron M, Fernandez J, Arias E (1997) Effect of gamma irradiations on pineapple pollen germination and tube growth. Fruits 51(6):425–428Google Scholar
  6. Cabot C (1987) Practice of pineapple breeding. Acta Hortic 196:25–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cabral JRS, De Matos AP (2009) Imperial, a new pineapple cultivar resistant to fusariosis. Acta Hortic 822:47–50CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Cabral JRS, de Matos AP, de Cunha GAP (1993) Selection of pineapple cultivars resistant to fusariose. Acta Hortic 334:53–58CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Cabral JRS, Reinhardt DH (2004) Selfing in pineapple breeding. Pineapple News 11:20Google Scholar
  10. Chan YK and Lee CK (1985) The hybrid 1 pineapple: A new canning variety developed at MARDI. Teknologi Buah-buahan 1:24–30Google Scholar
  11. Chan YK (1991) Evaluation of F1 populations from a 4 × 4 diallel in pineapple and estimation of breeding values of parents. MARDI Res J 19:159–168CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Chan YL, Lee HK (1996) Josapine: a new pineapple hybrid developed at MARDI. Second National Congress on Genetics 13–15 Nov Genetics Society of Malaysia. p 217–220Google Scholar
  13. Collins JL (1950) Review of current breeding work. PRI abstract of monthly seminar review. pp 21Google Scholar
  14. Collins JL (1960) The pineapple – botany, cultivation and utilization. Interscience Publishers Inc., New York, p 294Google Scholar
  15. Coppens d’Eeckenbrugge G, Avila DEA, Martinez AR, Martinez LR (2011) The Cascajal block. Pineapple News 18:47–48Google Scholar
  16. Coppens d'Eeckenbrugge GC, Marie F (2000) Pineapple breeding at Cirad. II. Evaluation of ‘Scarlett’, a new hybrid for the fresh fruit market, as compared to ‘Smooth Cayenne’. Acta Hortic 529:155–163CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Dujardin M (1991) Cytogenetique de l’ananas. Fruits 46:376–379Google Scholar
  18. Firoozabady E, Heckert M, Gutterson N (2006) Transformation and regeneration of pineapple. Plant Cell Tissue Org Cult 84(1):1–16CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Firoozabady E, Young TR (2013) Pineapple plant named Rose (EF2-114). Plant Patent No. US20130326768P1Google Scholar
  20. Folse HJ, Roughgarden J (2012) Direct benefits of genetic mosaicism and intra-organismal selection: modelling coevolution between a long-lived tree and a short-lived herbivore. Evolution 66(4):1091–1113CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Gill DE, Chao L, Perkins SL, Wolf JB (1995) Genetic mosaicism in plants and clonal animals. Annu Rev Ecol Syst 26:423–444CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Gonzales J, Vriesenga J (2005) Pineapple plant named ‘P-1972’. US patent Application Number 20050283863Google Scholar
  23. Ibrahim R, Hamzah A, Jam ZJ, Bahagia M, Joyo M (2009) Gamma irradiation-induced mutation for the improvement of Josapine pineapple against bacterial heart rot disease and improved fruit quality. Induced plant mutations in the genomics era. Proceedings of an International Joint FAO/IAEA Symposium, 2008. p 276–278Google Scholar
  24. Johnson MO (1935) The Pineapple. Paradise and Pacific Press, Hawaii, p 306Google Scholar
  25. Kerns KR, Collins JL (1947) Chimeras in pineapple. Colchicine-induced tetraploids and diploid-tetraploids in the Cayenne variety. J Hered 38:322–330CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kilian A, Sanewski G, Ko L (2016) The application of DArT-seq technology to pineapple. Acta Hortic 1111:181–188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Ko HL, Campbell PR, Jobin-Décor MP, Eccleston KL, Graham MW, Smith MK (2006) The introduction of transgenes to control blackheart in pineapple (Ananas comosus L.) cv. Smooth Cayenne by microprojectile bombardment. Euphytica 150(3):387–395CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Ko L, Eccleston K, O’Hare T, Wong L, Giles J, Smith M (2013) Field evaluation of transgenic pineapple (Ananas comosus (L.) Merr.) cv. ‘Smooth Cayenne’ for resistance to blackheart under subtropical conditions. Scientia Hortic 159:103–108CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Levitt R (2014) A noble present of fruit: a transatlantic history of pineapple cultivation. Gard Hist 42(1):106–119Google Scholar
  30. Lin H, Tsay Y (2005) Studies on the combination of tissue culture and gamma ray irradiation to induce pineapple mutations. J Chinese Soc Hortic Sci 51(3):241–248Google Scholar
  31. Mendiola NB, Capinpin JM, Mercado TM (1951) Pineapple breeding in the Philippines 1922–1941. Philippine J Agr 16:51–84Google Scholar
  32. Mhate M, Srinivas L, Ganapathi TR (2011) Enhanced iron and zinc accumulation in genetically engineered plants using soybean ferritin gene. Biol Trace Elem Res 144(1–3):1219–1228CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ming R, VanBuren R, Wai CM, Tang HB, Schatz MC, Bowers JE, Lyons E, Wang ML, Chen J, Biggers E, Zhang JS, Huang LX, Zhang LM, Miao WJ, Zhang J, Ye ZY, Miao CY, Lin ZC, Wang H, Zhou HY, Yim WC, Priest HD, Zheng CF, Woodhouse M, Edger PP, Guyot R, Guo HB, Guo H, Zheng GY, Singh R, Sharma A, Min XJ, Zheng Y, Lee H, Gurtowski J, Sedlazeck FJ, Harkess A, McKain MR, Liao ZY, Fang JP, Liu J, Zhang XD, Zhang Q, Hu WC, Qin Y, Wang K, Chen LY, Shirley N, Lin YR, Liu LY, Hernandez AG, Wright CL, Bulone V, Tuskan GA, Heath K, Zee F, Moore PH, Sunkar R, Leebens-Mack JH, Mockler T, Bennetzen JL, Freeling M, Sankoff D, Paterson AH, Zhu XG, Yang XH, Smith JAC, Cushman JC, Paull RE, Yu QY (2015) The pineapple genome and the evolution of CAM photosynthesis. Nat Genet 47:1435CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Noorman Affendi M and Rozlaily Z (2016) Evaluation of new clones of ‘Jospine x 53-116’ on Malaysian peat and mineral soil. Acta Horticulturae Proc Int Symp on Papaya, Pineapple and Mango 1111:195–201Google Scholar
  35. Ogata T, Yamanaka S, Shoda M, Urasaki N, Yamamoto T (2016) Current status of tropical fruit breeding and genetics for three tropical fruit species cultivated in Japan: pineapple, mango and papaya. Breed Sci 66:69–81CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Perez G, Isidron M, Arias E, Perez S, Gon J, Nieves N (1997) Caracterizacion phenotipica, bioquimica Y cytogenetic plantas de pina obtenidas por variacion somaclonal mutagenesis. Acta Hortic 425:221–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Sanewski G (2008) The effect of cut style pollination on fruit set in selfed pineapple. Pineapple News 15:7–9Google Scholar
  38. Sanewski GM (2009) The effect of different levels of inbreeding on self-incompatibility and inbreeding depression in pineapple. Acta Hortic 822:63–70CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sanewski G, DeFaveri J (2017) The Australia fresh market pineapple breeding program. International Symposium on GA3 Tropical Fruit (Guava, Wax Apple, Pineapple, Sugar Apple).
  40. Shoda M, Urasaki N, Sakiyama S, Tarakami S, Hosaka F, Sigeta N, Nishitan C, Yamamoto T (2012) DNA profiling of pineapple cultivars in Japan discriminated by SSR markers. Breed Sci 62:352–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Singh R, Iye CPA (1997) Standardisation of dosimetry and techniques for inducing mutations in pineapple. In: Nijjar G (ed) Fruit breeding in India, vol 212. Oxford & IBH Publishing Co., New DelhiGoogle Scholar
  42. Smith JB (1965) Multiple objective breeding: new dimensions in pineapple improvement. PRI News 13(1):121–117Google Scholar
  43. Sripaoraya S, Marchant R, Power JB, Davey MR (2001) Herbicide-tolerant transgenic pineapple (Ananas comosus) produced by microprojectile bombardment. Ann Bot 88(4):597–603CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Trusov Y, Botella JR (2006) Silencing of the ACC synthase gene ACACS2 causes delayed flowering in pineapple. J Exp Botany 57(14):3953–3960CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Ventura JA, Costa H, Caetano LCS (2009) Vitoria pineapple: scab resistant cultivar. Rev Bras Frutic 31:4CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Wang ML, Uruu G, Xiong L, He X, Nagai C, Cheah KT, Hu JS, GL N, Sipes BS, Atkinson HJ, Moore PH, Rohrbach KG, Paull RE (2009) Production of transgenic pineapple (Ananas comosus (L) Merr) plants via adventitious bud regeneration. In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Plant 45(2):112–121CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Williams DDF (1970) Production, propagation, and testing of new varieties. PRI News 18:9Google Scholar
  48. Williams DF, Fleisch H (1993) Historical review of pineapple breeding in Hawaii. Acta Hortic 334:67–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Wortmann S, Kerns K (1964) The plant breeding program. PRI Res Rep 64:180Google Scholar
  50. Yabor L, Valle B, Carvajal C, Aragon C, Herandez M, Gonzalez J, Daquinta M, Arencibia A, Lorenzo JC (2010) Characterisation of a field grown transgenic pineapple clone containing the genes chitinase, AP24 and bar. In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Plant 46(1):1–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Young RA (2016) Pineapple production on Dole farms in Latin America. Acta Hortic 111:227–230CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Young R, Gonzales J (2009) Pineapple plant named ‘Dole 14’. United States Patent Application 20090328260Google Scholar
  53. Zhou L, Matsumoto T, Tan HW, Meinhardt LW, Mischk S, Wang B, Zhang D (2015) Developing single nucleotide polymorphism markers for the identification of pineapple (Ananas comosus) germplasm. Hortic Res 2:15056CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Queensland Department of Agriculture and FisheriesMaroochy Research FacilityNambourAustralia

Personalised recommendations