Studies/Reports

CIP in Uganda: Experts expect 40-50% adoption of new blight resistant GMO potato variety Victoria

Stakeholders working within the potato sector in Uganda are confident about the wide adoption of a new bio-engineered late blight resistant potato. Dubbed the “3R Victoria” potato, the yet to be released International Potato Center (CIP) bred variety could help over 300,000 smallholder farmers in Uganda achieve higher yields at a lower cost with less exposure to chemicals, it is[Read More…]

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Specialist: Why the physiological age of potato seed tubers matters

According to Carrie Huffman Wohleb, Associate Professor and Regional Specialist – Potato, Vegetable, and Seed Crops at Washington State University, physiological age is an important concept in potato production. “The physiological age of seed tubers determines when the buds will sprout and how many sprouts will develop from those buds,” she says. “It affects stem numbers and vine growth. It[Read More…]

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No small fry: New MountainKing merchandising program focuses on baby potatoes

As sales of baby Golds, Reds and Medley potatoes continue to climb, MountainKing is embarking on an aggressive program to provide its retail partners with turnkey, display-ready options aimed at driving sales of the smaller, pre-sized variety. “Small potatoes are under-promoted and under-merchandised,” says John Pope, MountainKing vice president of sales and marketing. “We’re working to change that narrative in[Read More…]

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Aberdeen fry trials test processing potential of spud lines

It’s that time of year in Aberdeen when the pungent aroma of deep-fried french fries wafts through the hallways of the Marshall building on the campus of the University of Idaho’s Aberdeen Research & Extension Center, Bill Schaefer reports for Farm & Ranch.

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Researchers recount the importance of effective nutrient management for potato production

Beside other agronomic strategies, an adequate supply of macro- and micro-nutrients is of main importance for achieving a desired potato yield, say scientists at the University of Goettingen and K+S KALI GmbH in Germany. The team published a paper in Potato Research, the journal published by the European Association of Potato Research (EAPR), titled The Importance of Nutrient Management for[Read More…]

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Estonian Crop Research Institute trials newly developed red skinned potato varieties

Early red-skinned potatoes were harvested at a greenhouse in Jõgeva on Thursday, and scientists will now determine which varieties give the best yield and are most resistant to the negative effects of indoor lighting, ERR News reports. On December 13, five newly developed varieties of red-skinned potatoes were planted in pots in the Estonian Crop Research Institute (Eesti Taimekasvatuse Instituut)[Read More…]

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Expert advice: Potato fertilization on irrigated soils

This in-depth and extensive article on the subject of potato fertilization was written by soil and potato specialist and expert, Carl J Rosen, Department Head and Professor in the Department of Soil, Water, and Climate at the University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN. Prof Rosen wrote that optimum potato growth depends on many management factors, including sufficient supply of nutrients.

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Ireland: Early plantings stagnant, demand and price strong

The IFA reports that early plantings in Ireland have remained stagnant at large this week as ground conditions remain very wet. Demand and price remain strong for good quality material, particularly Kerr Pinks and Golden Wonders. Little or no progress has been made on stocks remaining in the ground. Growers are reminded to not rule out supplying the peeling market[Read More…]

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Irish potato farmers 'afraid' of pasta, rice and poor prices

49% of potato farmers in Ireland see competition from other carbohydrates such as pasta and rice as one of the biggest challenges facing the potato industry. Among the other major challenges to the sector listed were price, competition from imports and the loss of plant protection products. These results came from a poll taken to gauge the feeling in the Irish industry and[Read More…]

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The PVY scourge: How new potato virus strains are troubling Maine farmers

The rise in rejected seed potatoes from last season’s crop can be blamed on new strains of an old virus, a Maine Potato Board plant pathologist said Tuesday. The Maine Potato Board announced recently that 60 percent more seed potato lots tested in the 2019-2020 Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s annual post-harvest test were rejected than in 2018-2019.[Read More…]

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'Challenging season ahead for the European potato industry,' says NEPG

Over the last few years, the area for consumption potatoes has increased by 6.5 % in the 5 leading European potato countries, according to the NEPG (North-Western European Potato Growers). The organization says in a press release that if there is an increase again this year, combined with an average yield, the balance between demand and supply could lead to[Read More…]

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Eye on Potatoes Podcast: Potato Nutrition Research – The recipe for Good Food Policy

The podcast called “Eye on Potatoes” has been created by the National Potato Council in the US. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts, it provides an opportunity for growers throughout the country and policy makers in Washington to learn about industry policy priorities. According to Kam Quarles, NPC CEO, “Eye on Potatoes is a terrific way to keep[Read More…]

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Video: Building soil resilience with root architecture

In this YouTube video, Dick Neale (Hutchinsons Technical Manager in the UK) discusses the impact on soils that cover crops can have by sheltering the soil surface from rainfall – stabilising the surface of the soil, reducing capping and helping water infiltration. The effect of the cover crops used is also examined, particularly the effects from the different root types[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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French fries in China – big opportunities and high hurdles

The market for French fries in China is growing rapidly but barriers to entry exist for foreign providers, as Peter Peverelli of just-food.com explains. The potato, a staple of many European nations, has traditionally only had a supporting role in Chinese cuisine. It is known as tudou (literally: ‘earth bean’) in colloquial Chinese, or malingshu (‘horse bell tuber’) in formal[Read More…]

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Podcast: Agricultural economist explains the risks and benefits of GMOs and the future of crop biotechnology

Few academics eagerly engage the public on controversial scientific topics, content to quietly focus on their research. Agricultural economist and author Stuart Smyth isn’t among them. No stranger to social media and a frequent contributor to the Genetic Literacy Project, Smyth has consistently worked to translate his detailed books and scholarly publications about crop biotechnology into digestible educational content geared toward a[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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Colorado potato grower-brothers cooking up a successful recipe for improved soil health

In some ways, soil health conferences are like recipe swaps — with attendees always on the lookout for a mix of ingredients that will produce better results. One of those recipes presented at the sold-out Western Canada Conference on Soil Health & Grazing last month came from a Colorado potato grower who farms in high-elevation, near-desert conditions and no longer uses chemical inputs. Brendon Rockey calls[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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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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