Tree fruit growing - research and production in Germany: A statistical and bibliometric analysis of the period 1950-2010
Dalla Via J
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SubjectResearch institutions; Scientific output; Pears; Plums; Fruit production; Peaches; Bibliometry; Cherries; Apples; Apricots; Tree fruit growing
Germany is one of the leading European countries in tree fruit growing and the fruit produced has an actual production value of 794 million €. Six decades, from 1950 to 2010, of fruit production and internationally relevant scientific output for fruit crops-apple, pear, cherry, plum, apricot, and peach-were analysed in this study. Bibliographic and bibliometric analyses were based on the Science Citation Index®. Data were compared and discussed in the European and global context. The German annual per capita consumption of fruit amounts to 125.5 kg/a originating from commercial intensive fruit growing, including 71.8 kg/a of fresh fruit, 48.3 kg/a of citrus and tropical fruit, 3.8 kg/a nut fruit, and 1.6 kg/a dry fruit. Approximately 25 kg per annum and inhabitant has to be added to the total fruit consumption, since a conspicuous amount of fruit originates from meadow orchards and house gardens. Nevertheless, Germany's self-supply with fruit is a low 22.4%. Within the EU (2009/2010), Germany ranks fourth in apple production, tenth in pear production, fifth in cherry production, sixth in plum production, and 15th in the production of apricots and peaches. Based on the number of international scientific articles published in Germany, fruit crops can be ranked in descending order: apples, cherries, pears, plums, peaches and apricots. Relating the scientific output over the last six decades to the production data of the same country nowadays achieved, we obtain an indicator for the scientific impact on the crop production. On a worldwide comparison Germany ranks tenth for apple, sixth for pears, 21st for cherries, 17th for plums and first for apricots and peaches. With regard to the absolute output of scientific original articles Germany ranks fourth worldwide for apples, eighth for pears, second for cherries, fifth for plums, ninth for apricots and 14th for peaches, indicating that research on tree fruit growing in Germany supports the economic competitiveness of its production regions with highly specialized knowledge. © 2011 Springer-Verlag.
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