Scottish seed potato Brexit concerns

Rural Affairs Minister Mairi Gougeon has written to Minister of State at DEFRA George Eustice seeking urgent clarification and assurance that Scottish seed potatoes can continue to be exported to third countries, such as Egypt, in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit. This is all the more urgent given that the UK will not be a listed third country[Read More…]

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New antioxidant rich, red skinned potato variety developed by Indian scientists

Kufri Neelkanth is a new table purpose medium maturing specialty potato cultivar released for cultivation in the Northern Indian plains. It is rich in antioxidants (anthocyanins and carotenoids. The average yield of the variety is 35-38 t/ha. The tubers of the variety are dark purple black, oval in shape with medium deep eyes, cream flesh, good storability, medium dry matter[Read More…]

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Curbing food waste: Simplot’s senior manager of marketing and biotech affairs touts Innate potato

At a July 23 breakfast briefing titled ”Saving Food, Fighting Food Waste,” Doug Cole, the senior manager of marketing and biotech affairs at Simplot Plant Sciences in Boise, Idaho, reportedly said Simplot has developed a potato that will not brown and therefore won’t be thrown away by retailers, restaurants or consumers. According to an article by jerry Hagstrom published in[Read[Read More…]

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Research: New method reveals whether your potato is organic or not

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have developed a new approach that helps public agencies and commercial interests combat fraudulently-labelled organic foods. By looking at how organic plants are fertilised, the method provides a deeper, more accurate portrayal of whether eco-labelled produce is indeed organic. According to experts, imported organic fruits and vegetables are susceptible to food fraud. Assistant Professor[Read More…]

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Newly bred Indian potato variety said to be rich in antioxidants, ready for commercial production

Whether fried, baked or sliced, potato gels with nearly every Indian dish. Its bond with Indian consumers would be further strengthened with the introduction of a new variety said to be rich in antioxidants with excellent flavour when compared to traditional varieties. Bred and developed by the Central Potato Research Institute (CPRI) in Shimla, the new variety is dark purple[Read More…]

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Join the CIP-organized entry level training school on using potato biodiversity in breeding

The International Potato Center (CIP) is organizing an entry level training school where you will learn about crop biodiversity and how genetic resources can be used in pre-breeding. The training school will take place at the International Potato Center (CIP) in Lima from November 5th until November 7th, 2019. This training school is aimed at (Junior) potato breeders and researchers from Latin America who are interested[Read More…]

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‘Maara kai’: Re-invigorating Māori Food Sovereignty through potatoes

Māori have lived in New Zealand for around 700 years and were accomplished horticulturalists, bringing seed and tubers from their original homes in other Eastern Pacific Islands. They established ‘maara’ (gardens) in their new home Aotearoa/New Zealand, using sustainable methods, working with the land and climate. They also established trade with neighbouring Australia before colonisation changed the landscape of their[Read More…]

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Viewpoint: Dissecting the fear-based case against gene-edited crops in organic farming

For nearly 25 years, an allianceof high-profile environmental groups and organic food proponents have waged an effective scare campaign against transgenic (GMO) crops. Foods derived from these crops, the public was told, could cause food allergies, sterility, liver problems and even cancer. A 2016 report by the US National Academy of Sciences conclusively debunked such speculation, finding there is “no substantiated evidence of a[Read More…]

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German potato breeder Solana introduces three new varieties

Breeder and seed supplier Solana GmbH will use the upcoming potato fairs to introduce a total of three new table potatoes. Both the Weuthen Potato Day (August 29, Schwalmtal) and the Potato Europe (September 4 & 5, Tournai / Belgium) will focus on the extended variety spectrum of the company, which has its headquarters in Hamburg. “We will present a[Read More…]

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Chemical loss takes centre stage at potato conference

Scottish potato growers have been warned that there might not be a seed industry in Scotland in 30 years’ time if the spread of potato cyst nematode (PCN) continues at its current rate. As growers gathered to attend the UK’s largest potato conference, Potatoes in Practice – at the James Hutton Institute’s Balruddery Farm, in Invergowrie – there was a[Read[Read More…]

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PepsiCo-funded research opens new avenues for low-fat snack formulators

Australian researchers have developed a novel method to measure the sensorial characteristics of potato chips. The technique called vitro oral processing could eliminate the expensive, time-consuming and often subjective perceptions of enlisting trained sensory panellists. Especially when it comes to low-fat snacks. Low-fat potato chips might reduce the guilt compared with full-fat versions, but many consumers do not find them[Read[Read More…]

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Can aeroponics be the answer to disease free seed?

Conventional techniques of seed production involves the use of potatoes that are propagated by harvesting and replanting the tuber in the field, and is routinely used by farmers. Although the method is suitable for small scale farmers, it has several disadvantages like disease and pest infestation, labor intensive, time and weather dependent, low yield (8 tubers per plant per growing[Read[Read More…]

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Chinese and Scottish researchers establish collaborative links at Potatoes in Practice 2019

Chinese and Scottish researchers are to work together and explore joint solutions to potato breeding and to pests and diseases that cause major losses to farmers and industry across the world. A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Institute of Vegetables and Flowers, part of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, and the James Hutton Institute, during Potatoes[Read More…]

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New Canadian potato variety said to be resistant to common scab

In mid-July, a new variety of potato named Alliston was officially registered with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, making it the first tater in history to take its name from the potato capital of Ontario. The new variety was developed by a potato breeder from Quebec, Andre Gagnon. Gagnon wanted to create a spud with a round to oval shape,[Read[Read More…]

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PhD funding available: Advancing Genomic Selection for key processing traits in potato

Staff in Cell and Molecular Sciences at The James Hutton Institute in the UK have a distinguished track record of research in plant and crop science, including genetic and genomic analysis. They have contributed to international consortia conducting whole genome sequencing of important crop plants. This knowledge has enabled the identification of genes underlying key traits and provided the underpinning[Read More…]

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Despite budget cuts, seed potato inspections continue in Alaska for now

The Division of Agriculture in Alaska has found a way to continue seed potato inspections this year, despite Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s budget cuts to all inspection programs. It’s welcome news to Mark Troutman who’s been selling seed potatoes for 22 years. He’s growing nearly 30 varieties on his Little Susitna Farm outside Palmer. “It’s a good retirement job. I’m my own[Read More…]

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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