Cultivars from the SCRI Ribes and Rubus traditional breeding programmes have for many years been among the most popular in Europe, eg. raspberry cultivar 'Glen Ample' and the 'Ben' blackcurrants. Further cultivar releases are planned, and in order to ensure the continuing success of the SCRI programmes, the objective of the breeding work now is to become more closely integrated with underpinning genomics research. Breeding in highly heterozygous perennial fruit crops such as raspberry and blackcurrant is a lengthy process, but the speed and precision can be improved by the development and application of genomic technologies. The experimental power of genetics, including genome science provides an opportunity to apply the contemporary tools to the breeding of perennial fruit crops. Sequencing technology has provided us with a wealth of genomic and EST information that has been accompanied by projects to locate, annotate and assign biological function. Despite these efforts, only a fraction of these annotated genes are associated with a phenotype that provides a predictive framework for understanding and manipulation. In soft fruit crop genera, complex pest and disease and quality traits, such as flavour, texture and appearance, are poorly understood at the molecular/biochemical level. A renewed focus on 'closing the phenotypic gap' (Bochner, 2003) is required to ensure that our understanding of commercially-acceptable traits in these crops benefits from the genomics revolution in the life sciences. Integration of robust phenotypic data representing the structural features with meiotic mapping offers new opportunities for the analysis of traits that were previously intractable. The aims and alignment of genomic technologies with the Rubus and Ribes breeding programmes at SCRI is outlined.