Cultivation/Production

Idaho mulls new ring rot requirements

The Idaho potato industry is mulling required bacterial ring rot testing of early generation seed, as well as new record-keeping standards to better trace infections back to a point of origin. A group of about 35 industry representatives has been meeting for several months to address their state’s ongoing challenges with the disease, which can be financially devastating to growers.[Read More…]

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British spud growers to be hit hard by slug pellet ban

Potato growers are set to be the hardest hit by the European Union ban on methiocarb slug pellets, which account for about half the slug control market for spuds. Sales of these poison-bait pellets, such as Draza forte and Decoy Wetex, are set to be banned by the end of August this year due to the risk to grain-eating farm[Read More…]

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México: Impulsan biólogos veracruzanos cultivo de papa libre de fertilizantes artificiales

Después de varias investigaciones y estudios, biólogos veracruzanos lograron concretar un paquete agrotecnológico para integrarlo en el manejo del cultivo de la papa, por lo que el año pasado se logró retirar, en las siembras experimentales, todos los químicos con los que se suele combatir al nematodo dorado, aproximándose así al objetivo de cultivar el tubérculo de manera orgánica en[Read More…]

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Canada: Potato pest causes $6M in lost crops

A pest that caused $6 million in damage to Prince Edward Island potato crops last year is spreading. The wireworm is a type of click beetle. It used to be found only in isolated areas, but now it’s showing up across the Island, the P.E.I. Potato Board said. The worm makes holes in potatoes and other crops, making them unfit[Read More…]

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UK: Uniform seed spacing ‘not vital for spud yield’

New research has hinted that consistent seed spacing may not influence final saleable potato yield as much as first thought and could spell the end for cup-type potato planters. A project by NIAB-CUF PhD researcher Simon Smart has been assessing the effect of seed spacing on the crop and initial results from the first year have made some interesting discoveries.[Read More…]

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US: Potato prices recover, but still in the red

The good news for potato growers is that the prices they are receiving for fresh spuds this winter is about twice what they were getting last January. The bad news is that price is still below their cost of production. “Growers are probably paying their bills, but they’re not making much,” said Paul Patterson, University of Idaho extension economist at[Read More…]

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Northern Ireland: Potato growers ‘must secure a fair price’

Potato farmers are being urged to strongly market their remaining stock over the coming weeks in order to secure a fair price for their product. That is the advice of the Ulster Farmers’ Union potato chairman Adrian Jamison who also highlighted the need to watch market signals carefully. Mr Jamison explained: “The good summer and mild autumn/winter of 2013 has[Read More…]

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US: Program makes inroads against Zebra chip

Zebra chip infection rates are way down in Idaho, but researchers say they still need more years of data before they can relent on their program to protect growers from the disease. University of Idaho researchers have no plans to scale back on the intensive program they implemented in 2013 to track the tiny, winged insects that spread the crop[Read More…]

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US: Potato convention highlights issues growers face

Potato growers from every region in the West are attending the 46th annual potato conference held at Idaho State University in Pocatello. While certain diseases such as: Bacterial Ring Rot, Zebra Chip, and Potato Late Blight are still a threat, some of the top potato researchers were giving lectures on how they are working in laboratories to nix that. “The[Read More…]

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GMO potatoes discussed at Potato Expo

A big topic at this year’s Potato Expo in San Antonio was the release of Simplot’s Innate technology for potatoes. During one of the Expo sessions Joe Guenthner from the University of Idaho discussed the benefits of Innate. More

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Aardappelareaal Zuid-Australië krimpt fors in

Aardappeltelers in het zuidoosten van Zuid-Australië vrezen dat zij hun productie moeten verminderen vanwege waterproblemen. Dat meldt ABC Rural. Door de overgang naar een nieuw stelsel krijgen de telers onvoldoende toegang tot voldoende water. Zeker in extreem droge jaren worden zij gedwongen terug te gaan in areaal. Telers in sommige gebieden zeggen dat de teruggang in areaal vanaf 1 juli[Read More…]

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TOMRA demonstrates Field Potato Sorter at Fruit Logistica

TOMRA Sorting Solutions will demonstrate two of its market-leading sensor-based systems at this year’s Fruit Logistica, the leading fair for the international fresh produce trade. The company will showcase its Field Potato Sorter (FPS) and Genius optical belt sorter at the event, taking place at the Messe Berlin Fair Grounds, from 5 to 7 February. The TOMRA systems will be[Read More…]

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Potato harvest in Bulgaria was satisfying: expert

“Bulgaria’s potato harvest was satisfying,” said Ventsislav Kaymakanov, chairperson of the National Association of Potato Producers, speaking with FOCUS News Agency. “We managed to sell more than 200,000 tons of potatoes. Against a demand of 400,000-500,000 tons, these 200,000 tons produced amidst a dry year, which caused serious harm, is absolutely satisfying. I know that the export is big but[Read More…]

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UK: Soil health key to breaking potato yield plateau

Boosting soil nutrition and cutting compaction will be two key factors in breaking through the yield barrier that potato growers have hit over the past 20 years. Maincrop potato yields increased sharply up to the mid-1990s, but since then yields have stagnated at about 44.6t/ha, according to Potato Council data covering 1960-2013. Speaking at the recent Cambridge University Potato Growers[Read More…]

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US: Potato pests, prices top concerns of potato industry

Early blight and white mold — and the yield and quality loss due to these and other potato pests — are the top concerns of many potato growers. Those are the results of the Potato Perspectives Survey that Bayer CropScience, Research Triangle Park, N.C., conducted among attendees of the Potato Expo, Jan. 8-10, in San Antonio. Of those surveyed, 48[Read More…]

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Bayer CropScience reveals insights into U.S. potato industry’s top needs for 2014

According to United States Department of Agriculture’s crop production predictions, average potato yield per acre increased during the 2013 season. In an effort to propel this upward trend into the New Year, Bayer CropScience launched its Potato Perspectives Survey during Potato Expo in San Antonio, Texas, Jan. 8-10, 2014. Bayer CropScience collected insights from tradeshow attendees across the food chain[Read More…]

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Managing Weed Resistance to Herbicides in the Potato Rotation

In the latest ‘Focus on Potato’ webcast, titled “Managing Weed Resistance to Herbicides in the Potato Rotation,” Dr. Jed Colquhoun, weed science professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison gives users an update on herbicide-resistant weeds. Herbicide-resistant weeds pose significant economic and production challenges, particularly in specialty crops such as potatoes where weed control options are already limited. This presentation will[Read More…]

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Dutch lead the way in potato cyst nematode control

Potato nematodes are now a minor pest threat in the Netherlands and one Dutch expert believes British potato growers could learn lessons from their success. Growing potatoes as a trap crop for potato cyst nematodes (PCN), using resistant varieties and rigorous testing for the industry’s most damaging pest have all led to better control. Dutch growers use more robust sampling[Read More…]

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US: Industry leader cautions against over-planting potatoes

After a disastrous 2012-13 marketing year, fresh-market potato supply and demand appear more in balance for 2013-14, resulting in steady pricing and reasonable returns — but the processing sector still has the potential to affect that. “We have a balanced crop and the outlook says there’s no reason for us to give it away and there’s no reason for us[Read More…]

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UK: Potato modelling system wins science award

A potato modelling system, which forecasts yield and tuber size won a Practice with Science Award at the Oxford Farming Conference (OFC). Developed by NIAB CUF, the tool can supply valuable data to the entire potato supply chain, to aid in-field and processing practices and reporting. The system’s modeling allows growers to calculate seed rates and a crop’s irrigation needs,[Read More…]

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Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse


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