Research

New russet potato variety honoring Idaho's Galena Peak poised for release

A high-yielding russet potato that was bred locally and should be officially released soon has shown promise as a short-season variety for processing that’s suited for storing at cold temperatures. Rich Novy, a potato breeder with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service in Aberdeen, made the initial cross for the russet line, A03141-6, in 2003. Novy said the spud will be called[Read More…]

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EAPR 2020 Conference: 'An inspiring program and diversified range of potato specialists,' says President

The 21st Triennial Conference of the European Association for Potato Research (EAPR) will be hosted in Warsaw, Poland, 6-10 July 2020. The Conference will be organized in Hilton Warsaw Hotel And Convention Centre, in the very heart of the city, with an excellent access to all means of transport, as well as to many tourist attractions, museums and the Old[Read More…]

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WPC webinar reminder: Hybrid Breeding and Hybrid True Potato Seeds (HTPS) Revolutionizing The Potato Industry

Don’t miss out on the World Potato Congress’ (WPC) second webinar of 2020 featuring Mr. Hein Kruyt, CEO of Solynta.  The webinar will be hosted this coming Thursday, February 20, 2020 at 09:00 AM Eastern Standard Time (USA and Canada). Here’s how to register in advance:https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_56DjN0QuQSm1MulwjtpqGwFollowing your registration, you will receive a confirmation email containing information on how to join the webinar. Webinar participants will be[Read More…]

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'Quikgro': Potato varieties suited to sub-Saharan conditions

Potato is a key food and cash crop contributing both to food security and the local economy in Kenya, Malawi and elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa. Scientists from the James Hutton Institute in collaboration with the University of St Andrews in the UK are supporting an innovative research project aiming to develop potato varieties suited to the agronomic and environmental conditions[Read More…]

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'Starch Trek': What it takes to breed a new potato variety

[Although this extensive article by Marcel Bruins was originally published by European Seed in 2018, I believe it to be as relevant and topical today as it was then, and I decided to publish a very brief summary of part of it here with a link to the full article. – Lukie] European Seed sat down with some of the[Read More…]

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Multi-state potato research project in the US analyzes improving soil health

It’s called the kitchen sink treatment among the scientists involved in a four-year, 10-state research project analyzing how to replenish depleted soils in potato rotations. Essentially, the researchers throw “everything but the kitchen sink” into improving soil health in their plots — fertilizing with composted dairy manure and planting a crop as “green manure” between rotation crops. Green manure maintains[Read More…]

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PhD project opportunity: 'Optimizing yield and quality by predicting vitality of seed potatoes'

Wageningen UR (University & Research Centre) in the Netherlands has an opening for an interested and qualified PhD candidate to complete aproject focused on the vitality of potato seed. In principle this is a 48-month PhD position. The University offers a temporary contract for 12 months which will be extended with three years if the successful candidate performs well. Physiological quality[Read More…]

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Study: Daily intake of non-fried potato linked to better diet quality compared to refined grains

Potatoes are often equated with refined grains due to their carbohydrate content. Yet, potatoes contain fiber, resistant starch, and key micronutrients that Americans need more of in their diet. A randomized crossover study that included 50 generally healthy adults directly compared the nutrient quality and impact on cardiometabolic risk factors of non-fried potatoes to refined grains. The study was conducted[Read More…]

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Potato breeding research in Maine boosted by new federal funding

U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King announced February 13th that the University of Maine’s (UMaine) Cooperative Extension Potato Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program has been awarded $553,486 to conduct further research on potato breeding in Maine. This funding was awarded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). “Maine’s potato industry is an integral[Read More…]

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International Day of Women and Girls in Science

On 22 December 2015, the General Assembly decided to establish an annual International Day to recognize the critical role women and girls play in science and technology, through Resolution A/RES/70/212(link is external). The International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated on 11 February, is implemented by UNESCO and UN-Women(link is external), in collaboration institutions and civil society partners that aim to[Read More…]

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CIP: Developing late blight resistant GMO potato varieties for Africa

The International Potato Center (CIP) is working in East Africa to breed GMO varieties of potatoes that combine three forms of resistance to late blight — the disease that can exact costly tolls on smallholding farmers. CIP states that the objective of the project is: “To develop and deliver bio-engineered potatoes completely resistant to late blight to reduce the costs[Read More…]

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New book offers science-based information to guide potato research and development

Many people are not aware that the potato is the third most important global crop in terms of human consumption. It contributes to the food and nutrition security, climate resilience and incomes of millions of resource-poor families across the Global South. However, achieving the potato’s full potential to feed a growing population in a climate-changing world requires research, new technologies[Read More…]

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Retiring Univ of Idaho potato scientist recounts evolution of Idaho ag

Jeff Stark’s retirement plans would just have to wait. With only two and a half weeks to his retirement, Stark was busy completing all the necessary paper work for the release of the Galena Russet potato. Stark had been the director of the University of Idaho’s Potato Variety Development Program since 2006 and he estimated that the Galena Russet was[Read More…]

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Argentina: Field trials with non-browning CRISPR-edited potatoes start

In a study published recently in the Frontiers in Plant Science magazine, scientists from Argentina and Sweden reported they have edited a polyphenol oxidase gene in potatoes (Solanum tubersoum L.). After successfully editing the gene, they obtained tubers free of enzymatic browning. With the approval of the National Agricultural Biotechnology Advisory Commission, field trials began that “will … generate data to register[Read More…]

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World Potato Congress: What’s all this talk about Hybrid breeding and Hybrid True Potato Seeds revolutionizing the potato industry?

The World Potato Congress (WPC) is extremely pleased to be offering this second webinar in its 2020 series featuring Mr. Hein Kruyt, CEO of Solynta.  Hein will give an introduction to HTPS  as well as the exciting opportunity to revolutionizing potato research, breeding and the potato industry.  This technology is said to be disrupting a system that has been in place[Read More…]

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Study to test potato product’s effects on chronic kidney disease

Could a starch derived from raw potatoes slow the damaging effects of chronic kidney disease? A Manitoba, Canada clinical trial will test that idea by asking people with the disease to mix a flavourless powdered supplement into a drink, such as a smoothie, each day. Dr. Dylan MacKay, assistant professor of community health sciences at the University of Manitoba and[Read More…]

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The science of glyphosate: Is glyphosate hazardous to soil health?

There are dozens of conspiracy theories about glyphosate, writes Robert Arnason in an article in The Western Producer. He says one of those theories goes something like this: glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, is an antibiotic and it kills all of the beneficial bacteria and fungi in soils. “It makes the soil sterile in some cases leading to less[Read More…]

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Species specific insecticide ‘seven-10 years’ away

Using RNA interference (RNAi), a biological process which disrupts the production of an organism’s proteins, Syngenta is looking at a biocontrol method which kills target species but has no impact on any other organism, according to a report by Farmers Guardian. Using Colorado potato beetle as an example pest, Mike Bean, global head, product technology and engineering at Syngenta, told[Read More…]

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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