UK: Irrigation Best Practice Guide for potatoes published

The management and efficient use of water is a high priority within the UK Potato industry and the actions of growers will have an impact on future resources, especially as Potato Council data suggests 55% of growers have irrigation equipment and 40% of the total potato crop is grown on land with short term tenancies. However, by changing management practices[Read[Read More…]

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US: Minnesotans protesting potato pesticides turned away from McDonald’s meeting

A group of rural Minnesotans hoping to present their concerns about McDonald’s use of potato pesticides were denied entrance to the company’s shareholder meeting Thursday, they said. Kathy Connell, Larry Heitkamp and Amy Mondloch of the Toxic Taters Coalition said in a news release that they had worked with a McDonald’s shareholder to enter the meeting, but McDonald’s security turned them[Read[Read More…]

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Australia: McCain Foods plant cuts energy and costs

McCain Foods Lisarow plant has reduced energy costs by up to 10 percent and saving over $250,000 a year after undertaking a Federal and State Government grant program. The program started in November 2013 and was completed In October 2014, with a final verification report due by end of April 2015. More You are unauthorized to view this page.

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Lamb Weston / Meijer director’s take on sustainability

Lamb Weston / Meijer, one of the top-3 producers of processed potato products in Europe and the Middle East and Africa, recently published its third sustainability report. The report highlighted the significant progress made with their sustainability agenda between 2012 and 2014, at all stages of the supply chain, from field to fork. The key results were saving direct water[Read[Read More…]

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J.R. Simplot, McDonald’s joint venture in China given ‘record fine’ for water pollution

A McDonald’s joint venture in China supplying its outlets with French fries has been slapped with a record 3.9 million yuan (HK$4.9 million) fine for water pollution, state media reported. The fine levied against Beijing Simplot Food Processing was the largest ever meted out by the city of Beijing for pollution, the state-run Xinhua news agency said, citing the municipal environmental[Read[Read More…]

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US: R.D. Offutt Company’s move into forest land raises water, wildlife concerns

R.D. Offutt Co., the nation’s largest potato grower, has been clear-cutting trees across north-central Minnesota in recent years, making space for potatoes. The massive change in the landscape, fears of groundwater overuse, the risk of nitrogen fertilizer contaminating the drinking water – all this has some locals fuming. Offutt spokeswoman Anne Struthers said turning forests into fields creates room for the company to switch from[Read[Read More…]

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EU to review neonicotinoid ban

It was announced last week that the European Commission will start a review of the European Union (EU) ban on neonicotinoid pesticides imposed in 2013 in response to bee health concerns. The next step will be taken by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), who will publish a “call for evidence” by the end of May. You are unauthorized to[Read More…]

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Bayer and Farm Frites implement sustainable practices in EU potato cultivation

Bayer CropScience and Farm Frites recently started a Food Chain Partnership initiative designed to implement sustainable agricultural practices in potato cultivation in the Netherlands and Belgium. The goal of the partnership is to support a bottom-up approach with potato farmers addressing value-adding sustainable potato-growing practices at individual farm level. This is intended to minimize the environmental impacts of agricultural production[Read[Read More…]

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New Zealand: Sustainable farming research to begin

Improving potato yields, groundwater and the use of precision agriculture technology are the aims of three of about 30 new projects to get support from the Sustainable Farming Fund. The research will be undertaken by the Foundation for Arable Research. Chief executive Nick Pyke said studying nitrate leaching into aquifers was a project specifically for the Ashburton region in Canterbury.[Read[Read More…]

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US: RD Offutt Company invests in aerial spaying precision clinics

As downstream demand for sustainability and environmental stewardship evolved, RD Offutt Company in the US saw the opportunity for an annual comprehensive event called the Aerial Application Calibration Clinic. The Clinic consists of two parts. More You are unauthorized to view this page.

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Interview with the CEO of Lamb Weston/Meijer

Bas Alblas, CEO of Lamb Weston/Meijer, speaks about the company’s sustainabilty strategy during a recorded video interview. Alblas, who has been involved in the food business for more than 30 years, says that there are a few important things to mention in so far as sustainability is concerned at Lamb Weston/Meijer, one being that the concept is fully ingrained in[Read[Read More…]

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Supporting the Scottish potato industry

Potato Council has been working to raise the profile of potatoes amongst Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs), promoting their health and sustainability credentials and creating awareness of the significant contribution they make to the Scottish economy. As a result, a Members’ Debate on potatoes took place in Scottish Parliament recently. Following several meetings with Potato Council, Claire Baker MSP,[Read[Read More…]

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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