Pests and Diseases

NPC responds to resumption of potato trade between PEI and Puerto Rico

The National Potato Council (NPC) today released a statement in response to news of the resumption of trade of table stock potatoes from Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada, into Puerto Rico. “We trust USDA and CFIA have put plans in place to strictly prohibit the resale of fresh potatoes to the mainland in order to prevent the potential spread of disease to U.S. potato farms,” said NPC CEO Kam Quarles.

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USDA allows resumption of Prince Edward Island tablestock potatoes into Puerto Rico

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the resumption of tablestock potatoes from Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada, into Puerto Rico. USDA has determined the importation of these potatoes under specified conditions poses little risk of introducing potato wart disease, a soil-borne disease that reduces yield and marketability, to Puerto Rico.

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AgroScout interviews renowned entomologist during conference event

AgroScout is an ag-tech company that aims to improve yield quality and quantity through visual inspection in the field. Representatives from AgroScout attended the recent Washington Oregon Potato Conference 2022 event. They joined by a special guest, Dr. Alan Schreiber, the owner and operator of Agriculture Development Group, Inc., (ADG) an agriculture research and consulting company.

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Conference to tackle key production issues that potato growers face

The 2022 Ontario Potato Conference will be hosted as a virtual event on Wednesday, March 2. The annual Conference will be presented by the Ontario Potato Board, and hosted by Potatoes in Canada. The day includes five sessions focused on key topics for potato production. Dr Eugenia Banks is the principle organizer. She shared the Conference program.

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Biological crop control company Koppert reveals new branding inspired by nature

Koppert launched its new branding on Thursday. After nearly 30 years, the biological crop control company has changed its logo and visual identity. The new branding matches Koppert’s ambition and reflects the company’s connection to nature. With offices in thirty countries, the company’s biological solutions are being used in 100 countries all over the world.

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EarthRenew: Regenerative products boost plant hormones, production of ‘healthier potatoes’

EarthRenew Inc, a Canadian fertilizer company supporting regenerative agriculture practices, today published positive results from its previously announced field trial collaboration between the company’s subsidiary, Replenish Nutrients, Lethbridge College, and Biome Makers. The company says its product Rebuilder showed in trials to boost the production of healthier potatoes free from common defects.

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Dogs sniff out significant potato diseases in fields and storages

Andrea Parish’s dogs are saving potato farmers throughout the country big money by quickly sniffing out a couple of significant crop diseases. Her canine’s specialize in detecting potato virus Y and bacterial ring rot. Her lovable Labradors can positively identify infected spuds just 48 hours after inoculation. Parish, owner and founder of the company Nose Knows Scouting, has been working with her dogs in potato storages and fields from Washington to Maine.

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Govt of Canada created committee to look into Prince Edward Island potato trade ban

The Government of Canada says in a press release it is “committed to restoring market access for PEI fresh potatoes to the United States and supporting PEI farmers impacted by trade disruptions.” To that end, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced the creation of the new Federal Ministerial Coordinating Committee on PEI Potatoes with the objective of “enhancing coordination and collaboration across the federal government to respond to concerns and find solutions.”

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CFIA: No new potato wart detected in national survey

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has completed its national survey for potato wart ahead of schedule, and potato wart was not detected, the agency says in a press release. The expedited completion of the survey marks an important step in the Government of Canada’s action plan to reassure international trading partners of the safety of Canadian seed potatoes, CFIA says in its press release.

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CFIA: Potato wart investigation could take until 2023

An official from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency says the investigation into the discovery of potato wart in two P.E.I. fields could take until 2023 to complete. As Nancy Russell reports for CBC News, a group from CFIA made a presentation Friday afternoon to members of the legislature’s standing committee on natural resources. Committee chair Cory Deagle was so taken aback by the mention of 2023 he asked the presenter to repeat what he had just said.

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Potato wart: NPC releases statement on today’s meeting with the P.E.I. delegation

Statement issued by Kam Quarles, CEO of the National Potato Council (NPC): “We were pleased to sit down with Premier Dennis King and a delegation from Prince Edward Island this morning for a conversation about safely and efficiently restoring trade with this important province for both the U.S. and Canadian potato industries. NPC reiterated that this is a plant health issue, not a trade dispute, and we strongly support the USDA commitment to protect the U.S. potato industry from this devastating disease. …

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Ban of P.E.I. spuds to U.S. won’t be resolved this year: minister

The ban of Prince Edward Island’s potatoes to the U.S. won’t end this month, federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau said Wednesday. “It would be ambitious to think it could be solved by the end of the year, considering the date,” Bibeau said. “It’s a top priority. … I’ve had quite a few conversations with (U.S. Agriculture) Secretary (Tom) Vilsack directly.”

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Breeders go back to the future to combat the world’s deadliest potato disease

This CIP@50 story digs into a new rapid-fire approach to potato breeding that makes farmer-favorite varieties resistant to late blight, which could increase profits by at least 40% wherever potato is cropped. The secret? The latest biotech methods mixed with the oldest breeding trick in the book – harvesting the wild genes of the potato’s distant ancestors. 

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NPC CEO weighs in on soil sampling data and the spread of potato wart on PEI

Kam Quarles, CEO of the National Potato Council (NPC) calls in via the organization’s Eye on Potatoes podcast to discuss how CFIA’s own data – which is said to “demonstrate a clear and troubling reduction in sampling”, and how this leaves the industries on both sides of the border with uncertainties about the spread of the disease on PEI and what the future holds for reopening trade with this important industry partner.

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Fera to continue aphid monitoring of British seed potato crops

Fera Science Ltd in the UK announced that following consultation with existing customers and stakeholders, they are pleased to confirm that Fera will be providing its industry-critical aphid monitoring programme for the 2022 season, utilising the same reporting and alert platform as previous years. Fera has been working with AHDB to coordinate a smooth transition into the forthcoming season.

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Potato wart crisis in North America: Opposing opinions and viewpoints from U.S. and Canadian industry bodies

The recent discovery of potato wart disease on Prince Edward Island in Canada made industry headline news the past couple of weeks. On Dec 2, The Packer magazine published an opinion article about the situation authored by the CEO of the National Potato Council (U.S.). On Dec 6, The Packer published a letter it received from the Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC) and the Canadian Potato Council – in which the industry bodies responded to Mr Quarles’ article.

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Potato wart: Government-Industry potato working group assembles to help affected farmers in Prince Edward Island

According to a press release issued by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the Government of Canada is working with the Province of Prince Edward Island (PEI) and industry to support PEI farmers following the recent suspension of certification of fresh potatoes from PEI to the United States. The newly formed Government-Industry Potato Working Group met on Wednesday, November 24 for initial discussions.

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APHIS commends CFIA for voluntarily prohibiting export of seed and fresh potatoes from Prince Edward Island

In a news release issued today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) commends the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) for voluntarily prohibiting export of seed and fresh potatoes from Canada’s Prince Edward Island (PEI) into the United States due to the confirmed presence of Synchytrium endobioticum in that country.

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Prince Edward Island potato growers seek ‘quick’ answers to resolve trade issue with U.S.

The group representing potato farmers on Prince Edward Island says its members need answers quickly from Ottawa on the decision to suspend all shipments of fresh potatoes from the Island to the United States or the industry will face huge financial losses. Prince Edward Island Potato Board general manager Greg Donald says farmers were shocked to learn Monday that Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau had ordered the trade restriction after the recent discovery of potato wart in two P.E.I. fields.

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Prince Edward Island vows to fight federal decision to halt potato exports to U.S. over potato wart

Premier Dennis King said the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) government will consider all options at its disposal, including legal, to fight the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s suspension of fresh potato exports from the province to the U.S.  King said the federal government’s decision was “extremely disappointing” and will immensely hurt the Island’s economy.

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‘Nematodes as bio-indicators of Soil Health’ – Fera Science shortlisted for National Potato Industry Award

Fera (Fera Science Ltd) is pleased to announce that it has been named a finalist for the Potato Review’s National Potato Industry Awards under the category of Innovation. This year’s submission focusses on the work that the in-house Nematology team have done to develop a new commercial test that can provide valuable management information on soil health and the wider cropping system.

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