Centro Sur is pursuing innovation and research into the varieties of asparagus it works with, in order to guarantee its nutritional and organoleptic properties, to show the importance of this food in human nutrition. It has participated in the agriculture innovation cluster established in Huétor Tájar, CINNGRA (Agriculture Innovation Cluster of Granada).
Centro Sur wants to drive and promote innovation in small and medium enterprises, contributing to progress and the development of high-quality products in the agricultural sector.
Thanks to this association, innovation projects can be carried out with Centro Sur as a partner, lending its know-how about the fresh produce sector.
On the other hand, the company is investing in its own Research, Development, and Innovation department, which aims to study and optimise the company's industrial processes, the use of byproducts, and the development of products to expand its offering of fresh and packaged products, to encourage more widespread consumption of asparagus.
In addition, the cooperative actively supports research into sustainability, energy efficiency, and waste reduction. Therefore, it participates in projects with this aim, with the purpose of turning the agricultural industry into an increasingly eco-friendly industry.
Centro Sur also has the support of the National Food Technology and Preservation Centre (CTNC), with which it coordinates studies to continuously improve its products in terms of food safety and quality, developing all kinds of analyses and shelf life studies. In addition, they provide Centro Sur with updates from the sector, keeping the company up to date with the latest trends and lines of innovation.
It also work with the Institute for Agriculture and Fishing Research and Training (IFAPA) with which it has participated in studies related to the description of bio-active compounds of Huétor Tájar asparagus, among others.
On the other hand, Centro Sur also has the support of the High Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), with which it has coordinated tests to study the phytochemistry of wild asparagus, revealing differences with green asparagus, and therefore highlighting the advantages of native asparagus and returning to the origin of the species. The cooperative has participated in the study on green-purple Huétor Tájar asparagus in vitro cultivation, alongside the “La Mayora” institute in Málaga, part of the CSIC, with which it has studies the optimisation of its growth and regeneration at a laboratory level in order to be able to implement these reproduction techniques in the field. In addition, research carried out with the Institute of Fats in Seville regarding the profile of fatty acids in asparagus concluded by highlighting the nutritional importance of saponins, which are fatty compounds that are abundant in asparagus and help to reduce cholesterol.
Together with the University of Cordoba, studies have been carried out on the genetics of asparagus, which aim to assess the viability of cultivations with new species, crossing varieties such as “Huétor Purple” variety and the more commercial varieties. These local varieties are an important resource with valuable genetics that could be used to expand the genetic background of modern varieties.