Idaho spud growers report big size, fewer tubers

Idaho potato farmers are reporting fewer, but larger potatoes at the start of harvest, prompting consumer bag prices to rise and cartons to drop. Early in their potato harvest, Idaho growers say they’re digging fewer spuds than last year, but tuber sizes are much larger. Growers — who are now digging early maturing varieties such as Russet Norkotah, specialty types,[Read More…]

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India: Cauliflower takes over world-class seed potato in state’s cold desert

Having established its distinguished identity for production of world-class disease-resistant seed potato, the cold desert of Lahaul valley in Himachal is seeing sweeping changes with farmers replacing potato with cauliflower. Of the total 3,470 hectare cultivated agriculture land in Lahaul, majority is under cauliflower, pushing pea cultivation to the second place. A few years ago, 1,800 hectare land was under potato[Read More…]

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Controlling silver scurf

This common disease that causes unsightly blemishes on potatoes can be a headache for fresh market producers. What options are available to growers for controlling silver scurf? One of the more pervasive tuber diseases in North America, silver scurf has been increasing in incidence and severity in recent decades. This has resulted in economic losses that have been most clearly[Read More…]

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Europe: Potato cropsize below 5-year average

The North-western European Potato Growers (NEPG) expect the total potato production (excluding seed and starch potatoes) of this year’ s harvest to amount to 24.5 million tonnes. This is 14.1 percent below the potato production last year and 2.9 percent below the 5-year average. This is lower than the estimate NEPG provided in June, when the organisation predicted a total[Read More…]

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China’s urban growth and appetite for food, fuels Tasmanian potato growers’ optimism

Trevor Hall, a Scottsdale potato grower and chairman of the Tasmanian Farmers and Growers Association’s (TFGA) Simplot growers committee, said be believed Tasmania’s farming future was almost guaranteed by China’s growth. Mr Hall said his recent trip to the World Potato Congress in China had raised his hopes for the future. “One of the facts that was put to us[Read More…]

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Switzerland: Low potato harvest expected

The extreme weather has its effects on the potato harvest in Switzerland. The potatoes are small, which is why the supply will be limited. At 269 kilos of food content per 100m², the surface yields are almost at the historic low point of 2003 (262 kg/100m²), as Swisspatat reports. Compared to the last 5 years, the yields are around 25[Read More…]

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UK: Potato farmers crowned ‘producers of the decade’

A pair of potato farmers from Pembrokeshire have been named Britain’s food producers of the decade. Peter and Gina Smithies of Trehill Farm, Pembrokeshire, scooped the top prize at the National Trust Fine Farm Produce Award, awarded in recognition of the ceremony’s 10th anniversary. The married couple grow potatoes across 600 acres on the coast of Pembrokeshire, having been tenants at Trehill[Read More…]

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PotatoEurope 2015 is ready to start

Every four years Potato Europe is organized in one of the four main potato-producing countries. After France, the Netherlands and Germany in recent years, Belgium will be hosting this major open-air potato event in 2015On September 2 and 3 delegates from the potato industry will meet again in Kain, near Tournai/Doornik. Professional visitors will be able to talk to experts about[Read More…]

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Scottish ban on GM crops: A short-sighted move?

Scotland is set to ban the growing of genetically modified crops. The Scottish Government say this is an attempt to protect the country’s “clean, green status” but, says Professor Huw Jones, this is a short-sighted and hollow gesture. From a scientific perspective, the decision taken by the Scottish parliament to place a blanket ban on the cultivation of crop varieties developed[Read More…]

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Poland: High speed vine killing – the next generation haulm toppers

Last week APH Poland successfully put a 6 row Baselier HFD6LKB550 hydraulic foldable haulm topper into operation at the farm of Mr. Wojciech Baranowski. Mr. Baranowski grows seed potatoes on beds which are de-stoned prior to planting. The haulm topper is equipped with several options to reach an optimal topping result. The machine is a high speed version to ensure[Read More…]

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Focus on Potato webcast addresses fungicide resistance

Broad-spectrum fungicides have historically been the primary modes of action managing Early Blight and Brown Spot, two significant fungal diseases of potato caused by Alternaria pathogens. More recently, growers have been using narrow spectrum fungicides in their rotations to ease environmental concerns and minimize the effects of chemical residue. No matter the mode of action, measures to mitigate fungicide resistance[Read More…]

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Potato Field Day set in North Dakota

North Dakota State University and University of Minnesota potato research will be highlighted during the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association field day on Aug. 20. This year, the field day tour will travel to three locations. The day will begin at 7 a.m. with breakfast at Hoverson Farms near Larimore. Research presentations will begin at 8:15 a.m. Lunch and research presentations[Read More…]

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US: Disease-carrying potato psyllids increase in the Northwest

The potato psyllid insect pest is being seen in rapidly growing numbers across the Pacific Northwest, but few so far have been found to carry a potentially devastating disease. Last week, Washington State University Extension researchers found the bugs on 79 percent of field samples throughout the Lower Columbia Basin, up from 60 percent the week before and 50 percent the[Read More…]

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Wet summer puts dampers on Scottish potato crop

SCOTTISH scientists are warning that the chips could be down later this year due to a combination of dismal summer weather and scaled back potato planting. Potato growers suffered a disastrous financial year in 2014 after a massive surplus of the crop caused prices to plummet. To minimise the risk of being hit again by the same problems many farmers slashed the[Read More…]

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Top 5 Trends In Agriculture Technology

Emerging technology is arguably one of the most significant issues ahead for ag retailers. It is in that spirit that Joseph Russo presents his top five technology trends, picked out as being the most important from the perspective of an information technology company. More. Also: Futurist David Zach, speaking at this week’s InfoAg Conference in St. Louis, shared thoughts on the[Read More…]

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Northern Ireland: Farmers facing one of worst potato harvests in years

That’s because a late spring followed by a wet summer and difficulties in securing arable land have posed problems for the local industry. The poor weather has been exacerbated by rules governing the grants payable to potato growers and the land available to them, according to the Department of Agriculture (DARD). MLAs have raised their fears for the sector at[Read More…]

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Potato poduction and the environmental component of plant disease

By potato specialist Phil Nolte. As a plant pathologist, one of the first things I was taught was a fundamental concept called the “Disease Triangle.” This model contains the key elements required for a plant disease to occur and includes three components: You must have a susceptible host; You must have a virulent pathogen; and These two must come together[Read More…]

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UK: Potato blight warning after weather turns wet

Potato growers Britain are being urged to be alert against an increasing late blight threat in their crops as conditions turn to favour the moisture-loving disease. Predominantly dry weather has kept a lid on the devastating disease so far this season, allowing growers to keep their crops blight-free. However, recent heavy rain across the UK has provided the moisture to[Read More…]

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Bayer: Promoting sustainability in potatoes

At the 9th World Potato Congress, Bayer CropScience is showcasing its latest innovations and contributions for sustainable potato production. Under the theme ‘Innovating Together for Sustainable Potatoes’ experts from the company will present recent product novelties and new approaches that underline the role of Bayer CropScience as the innovation leader in its field. The 9th World Potato Congress takes place[Read More…]

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UK: AHDB strategic potato farm open event

AHDB Potatoes first Strategic Potato Farm (SPot) is now established in Staffordshire. An open day has been scheduled to take place July 23, allowing growers to take an expert led tour around a comprehensive 20 hectare trial plot. Each SPot farm partners for three years with a technically advanced grower innovator. The aim is to validate to the host business and[Read More…]

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Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse


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