New release: Fruit and Seed Family ID

ITP is pleased to announce the release of a new tool, Fruit and Seed Family ID. Developed in cooperation with Colorado State University, Fruit and Seed Family ID is an interactive tool that helps users identify unknown fruits and seeds to family. This tool should be useful for port identifiers and screeners, provincial and state departments of agriculture, university extension professionals, seed testing laboratories, and any non-expert with an interest in fruit and seed identification.

Fruits and seeds form the bulk of agricultural commerce. However, they can also be common contaminants of some commodities. To safeguard agriculture and natural resources and facilitate a healthy seed trade, unknown fruits and seeds must be correctly identified. Accurate and efficient identification is a critical step in safeguarding against seed-borne diseases, assessing product quality and certification, verifying that a product meets a country’s phytosanitary requirements, and halting the introduction, establishment, and spread of economically and environmentally detrimental plant species.

Prior to this tool, the only digital diagnostic tool that existed to identify seeds and fruits to all seed plant families, “Family Guide for Fruits and Seeds”, was difficult to access due to dated software, challenging characters, and taxonomic changes. Fruit and Seed Family ID is adapted from the “Family Guide for Fruits and Seeds” to provide a more user-friendly, accessible, and up to date resource to support seed identification using minimal magnification. Fruit and Seed Family ID incorporates as much of the data from “Family Guide for Fruits and Seeds” as possible, while also adjusting characters so they’re easy to use and incorporating the taxonomic changes that have occurred over the last two decades.

Fruit and Seed Family ID is a multi-year project designed to support identification of any fruits and seeds. This first edition of the tool covers 79 monocotyledon families. The next editions of Fruit and Seed Family ID will expand the families to include all flowering plants and then all seed plants.

Fruit and Seed Family ID joins ITP's collection of 48 identification tool websites.