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Potato Cyst Nematode results: How reliable are yours?

Image result for potato cyst nematodeSo your Potato Cyst Nematode (PCN) tests have come back negative. Good news…or is it? That largely depends on how the land was sampled and how the samples were analysed. Scottish Agronomy’s Eric Anderson warns that approaches vary enormously so results can be very misleading. The world of seed potato growing is relatively black and white with a statutory process that provides a prescriptive method for PCN sampling and the EU PCN Directive, which must be followed. But for ware growers there is no such statutory industry standard. As a result sampling and testing practices have developed more in the interests of economy and speed than accuracy. There is huge variation in the reliability of results. This issue is most serious for ware growers where the PCN status of land is unknown or PCN has not been detected in samples due to the sampling methodology not being sufficiently rigorous. More

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