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‘Potatoes in Practice 2021’ to focus on new varieties, IPM and trade challenges

Potatoes in Practice, the UK’s largest field event for potatoes and a highlight of the season for the sector bringing together variety demonstrations, research and trade exhibits in one place, is set to return on 12 August 2021 to Balruddery Farm (Angus, Dundee DD2 5LJ).

It will be hosted this year with a slightly different format to allow for social distancing, with the support of event partners James Hutton Institute, Agrii UK and SRUC.

It’s a welcome comeback for an event that has become an unmissable date in the potato industry calendar. After cancelling the event in 2020, Potatoes in Practice partners had to take a punt earlier in the year about the likely pandemic conditions by summer, knowing that unless demo plots were selected and planted in good time there would be no field event even if the restrictions were lifted.

Potatoes in Practice - setting the course for the future of the industry |  The Scottish Farmer

The need to work around likely or possible limitations on indoor spaces will result in a Potatoes in Practice event with a slightly different appearance, focussing on exhibitor small spaces from which to interact with visitors.

For the same reasons, there will be no seminars this year: it’ll be all about the plots, and field exhibits where the trade can interact and re-connect to discuss new varieties, IPM and the challenges of the trading environment in a COVID safe environment.    

This will also be the first Potatoes in Practice event for many years without the active participation and support of AHDB Potatoes. Following the levy payers’ No vote, the organisation is being wound down, which will present opportunities and challenges for the industry in the coming years.

Notwithstanding the many challenges for the potato industry, Potatoes in Practice 2021 is shaping up to be a key forum for the discussion of key topics about the technical and business realities.

Source: James Hutton Institute. Read the full news release here

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