The use of pathogen-free planting stock for new vineyard establishment is a key component in the maintenance and expansion of vine and quality table grape production. The success of the necessary changes in the structure of the grape industry is forced by the globalization process, the climate change, the rediscovery of autochton varieties as w...ell as breeding of new tolerant and resistant varieties. The renewal of vineyards largely depend on the availability of planting stocks. Serbia and Hungary found a common interest in establishing pathogen-free stock materials from newly breed resistant varieties and clonal selections of varieties which are traditional in the Serbian-Hungarian border area. During a cross-border cooperation program a complex system for the production of pathogen-free grapevine propagating material was established. Using heat therapy, in vitro shoot tip culture and traditional and molecular diagnostic techniques new pathogen-free stock materials were established from 26 varieties. They have been or will be tested for the presence of most important grapevine viruses, phytoplasmas, as well as bacterial and fungal pathogens. The complex system applying green grafting for indexing on grapevine indicators can shorten the duration of the procedure from 4 years to two-three years.
High performing propagation material is essential for a reliable and economical production of quality grapes. Apart from genetic aspects pathogen-freedom is of prime importance in propagation material. In particular virus diseases cause major yield and quality losses and reduced longevity. This is also reflected in the current EU legislation, w...hich focuses on the most common and dangerous viruses: GFLV, ArMV, GLRaV-I and GLRaV-III.Apart from these, locally occurring pathogens, e.g. phytoplasms or agrobacterium, are important as well and should not be present in propagation material. There are several ways to develop pathogen-free clones. Starting with already pathogen-free material is certainly the easiest case, but might not be feasible in local varieties with small acreages and limited vine numbers. In these cases the elimination of pathogens is required, either by heat therapy, tissue culture or somatic embryo genesis.