Poma Culta was initiated by Nicklaus Bollinger, a Swiss biodynamic farmer. In the 1990s he started arboriculture, using apple modern varieties. Not satisfied by the resistance of these varieties to pathogens, he began experimenting local cultivars and/or varieties from Germany. In order to move beyond the amateur breeder stage to more professional work, Niklaus decided to create a structure that would allow him to raise funds and in 2004 he founded the association Poma Culta.
The Poma Culta association has joined forces with the Swiss Organic Agriculture Research Institute (FiBL) for this selection work. The FiBL supports Poma Culta both on technical aspects of selection and on aspects related to plant diseases. Thanks to FiBL, Nicklaus’ observations can have a scientific basis, which gives robustness to his analyses. FiBL evaluates interesting varieties for disease resistance also testing them in its experimental fields.
Poma Culta starts to be recognised as an active breeder in the biological and biodynamic field and is mandated for various projects. It has also joined forces with the Bioverita association, which has created a label for breeding varieties under organic conditions.
Poma Culta raises awareness of arboriculture issues through open days on the farm and/or market events. Poma Culta carries the idea of a sustainable and input-free orchard and its primary objective is to create quality fruit that meets consumers’ expectations in terms of crunchiness, conservation and aroma.
The Poma Culta association has not yet achieved a real commercial diffusion of its varieties.