Sustainability

Jersey: Potato growers take action to reduce level of nitrates

Potato growers have identified two areas where farming practices must change this winter to prevent a repeat of the water pollution that shut Val de la Mare reservoir for five months earlier this year. A month away from the planting of the early crop of the 2017 potato season, the Island’s biggest potato producer, the Jersey Royal Company, is reducing[Read[Read More…]

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AHDB committed to keep the UK Seed Potato Industry healthy

AHDB Potatoes has pledged to work closely with the seed potato sector and Scottish Government to ensure that the industry maintains a low level of the bacterial disease blackleg. Speaking at the Seed Industry event in St Andrew’s, AHDB Potatoes Strategy Director Rob Clayton said that while there are no easy answers when it comes to blackleg, the key to[Read[Read More…]

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US: Florida’s Jones Potato Farm receives state award for environmental leadership

Jones Potato Farm recently became the third Manatee County farming operation to receive the Florida Ag Commissioner’s Agricultural-Environmental Leadership Award since it was first presented in 1994. The previous Manatee County recipients were Pacific Tomato Growers of Palmetto in 1999 and Schroeder-Manatee Ranch of Lakewood Ranch in 1995. Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam presented the awards at the Florida Farm Bureau state[Read[Read More…]

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Improving phosphorus management

With a global population expected by some to reach 9 billion people by 2050, improved management of key essential nutrients such as phosphorus will be necessary to boost crop yields and stay one step ahead of steeply rising food demand. If an applied rate of phosphorus is less than optimum for a crop under existing conditions, and a practice such as fertilizer[Read[Read More…]

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‘Nederlandse aardappel bevat veel te veel nitraat’

De Nederlandse aardappel bevat meer dan twee keer zoveel nitraat dan goed voor ons is. Dat zegt Anton Nigten, promovendus op het gebied van bemesting, voeding en gezondheid. De Nederlandse aardappel bevat volgens hem meer nitraat dan die uit andere Europese landen. Nigten legt de oorzaak bij de intensieve bemesting en de vorm waarin boeren organische mest aanvoeren. Nigten zegt dat naast[Read[Read More…]

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CIP: ‘Day for Disaster Reduction’ touts root and tuber resilience

Observed annually on October 13, International Day for Disaster Reduction is a celebration of global communities’ resilience in the face of natural or man-made disasters, as well as an attempt to draw attention to steps that need to be taken to bolster food security, infrastructure and more. In the face of more powerful storms resulting from a globally changing climate, potato[Read[Read More…]

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Report: Potato cultivation in danger of disappearing from the Netherlands

The Dutch potato cultivation has a strong position in northwestern Europe because of its good entrepreneurs and strong chain. These Dutch entrepreneurs are also in a leading position in the field of sustainability. At the same time, returns of potato cultivators are increasingly under pressure. There are plenty of opportunities for improving returns, and to continue investing in sustainability and[Read[Read More…]

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South Africa: 2016 Seed Potato Grower of the year announced

During the Seed Potato Grower’s forum in Umhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal, JP van den Berg from Northwest was named Seed Potato Grower for 2016 at the Bayer gala dinner. The other finalists for this year’s award were Frans Engelbrecht (North West) and W & K Boerdery (Western Free State). Three years’ certification data (from registration to control results) were used to determine the[Read[Read More…]

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US: Is there a way to revive drought-stricken soil?

In Colorado, potato-farming brothers are saving water by using cover crops innovatively. Among the myriad strategies farmers in Colorado’s San Luis Valley have attempted during a decade-long, soil-wracking drought is planting cover crops: efficient plants that enhance the soil’s ability to hold water. Cover cropping has helped Brendon Rockey slash water use by 40 percent and eliminate synthetic fertilizers. “It’s[Read[Read More…]

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Germany: Use of composts made of biowaste and treated compost in organic potato production

This project, which will be conducted in Lower Saxony in Germany over two years, wants to develop recommendations for the application of composts in organic potato production. Bio-waste compost should be established as a regular fertilizer in organic farming and limitations for the use of composts should be overcome. The project partners bring in their experience and their knowledge about[Read[Read More…]

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Canada: Prince Edward Island scientists see potential for sorghum sudangrass as potato rotation crop

You may not have ever heard of sorghum sudangrass but if you live on Prince Edward Island, it could be coming soon to a potato field near you. A team of researchers with Agriculture Canada are growing test plots of the fast-growing grass in Harrington, P.E.I., comparing it side by side to other rotation crops such as red clover. “We are interested[Read[Read More…]

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The environmental benefits of potato breeding

On World Environment Day (June 5), potato breeding company HZPC highlighted the benefits of breeding on yield, carbon footprint and water use. An extra 10 million tons of potatoes every year are grown by EU farmers thanks to potato breeding over the past 15 years. That’s more than the annual potato output of the whole of Poland, and means the EU[Read[Read More…]

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Europe: Progress of the Nematicide Stewardship Programme

Nematicides have come under considerable scrutiny recently, not only from European regulators but from environmentalists, health professionals and the general public. However, nematicide manufacturers say the use of these products will remain critical to many growers in producing a quality product and maintaining current rotations. The Nematicide Stewardship Programme (NSP) group was formed in 2015 to work alongside farmers and operators to[Read[Read More…]

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New Zealand: CropLogic secures new licence for global growth

Precision agriculture firm CropLogic has signed an exclusive agreement with the New Zealand Institute of Plant & Food Research to expand the marketing of its patented technology to corn, wheat, soybean and cotton farmers in the United States. Under an earlier agreement relating to potatoes, CropLogic has successfully created a predictive decision support system that has attracted some of the world’s[Read[Read More…]

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CIP, HZPC and Syngenta Foundation partnership established to improve South Asia’s potatoes

A new partnership has been formed which aims to develop better potatoes for tropical and subtropical conditions. The International Potato Center (CIP), global seed potato company HZPC and the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA) will combine their resources to breed potato varieties suitable for South Asia markets. The organisations will combine their experience and resources to breed and select potato[Read[Read More…]

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CIP: An inspired dryland potato harvest in India

When CIP staff first arrived in Jodhpur things felt familiar. The arid landscape, the water table, and the warm days that fed into cool evenings were reminiscent of Gujarat- India’s most productive potato growing state, except that at Jodhpur and Jaisalmer district runs along the Pakistan border no potatoes were grown. The land was fertile and free of soil borne diseases,[Read[Read More…]

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Canada: Inside Prince Edward Island’s brewing battle over an environmentally friendly GMO spud

Potatoes are prone to disease, such as the late blight fungus which is responsible for billions of dollars of annual losses. Keeping disease at bay requires a steady supply of fungicide, which can harm human health and the environment. The issue is particularly pressing on Prince Edward Island, which produces about one-quarter of Canada’s potatoes. The very characteristics that make[Read More…]

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Canada: BetterFRY, a technology shortlisted for the final of the International European MRW awards

Canadian company Eco Friendly Chef Corp has developed a patented technology named “BetterFRY” which has been shortlisted for the final in the International European MRW Awards in 2 categories: Equipment Innovation and Efficiency Initiative. BetterFRY is a patented hardware technology with a secret formulation that is retrospectively fitted to industrial scale deep and shallow fryers. The company is mentioning that “BetterFRY” reduces energy consumption,[Read[Read More…]

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Canada: Soil conservation a priority at Prince Edward Island potato farms

This week (April 17th to 23rd) is National Soil Conservation Week in Canada, and as potato farmers across Prince Edward Island are gearing up for spring planting, they are making soil conservation a priority on their farms. According to the Prince Edward Island Soil and Crop Improvement Association, 2016 is the thirtieth year of concentrated efforts by farmers and government[Read[Read More…]

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Jersey’s intensive potato farming must stop, says minister

Farmers are going to have to rethink their century-old practice of growing Jersey Royal potatoes year after year in the same ground in order to protect the Island’s reputation as a world-class food producer, according to the Environment Minister. Deputy Steve Luce described the recent discovery of the chemical oxadixyl in Jersey’s surface water supplies 13 years after it was[Read[Read More…]

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Maine potato growers eyeing insecticide decision

Potato growers in Maine are cautiously watching the actions of the Environmental Protection Agency as it reviews federal regulations for a popular insecticide that can be harmful to bees. Imidacloprid is an effective insecticide against the Colorado potato beetle, which can seriously damage potato crops, according to Don Flannery, executive director of the Maine Potato Board. The EPA is reviewing use[Read[Read More…]

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EU: Innovative and eco-efficient capsules to revolutionise pest control in potato crops

The EU-funded INBIOSOIL project has developed a new, eco-friendly method to control wireworm in potatoes that can be used in conventional and organic systems. The new method of pest control specifically uses special capsules called ATRACAP. They contain a strain of an entomopathogenic fungus that attacks specific pest insects and can reduce chemical pesticide use on European farms. The company[Read[Read More…]

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Idaho spud contracts require minimum three-year rotation

Sources say the 2016 Southern Idaho Potato Cooperative contract will include new language mandating a minimum of two years of alternate crops between potatoes. As of Feb. 15, SIPCO Executive Director Dan Hargraves said his organization had finished negotiations with Lamb Weston but not J.R. Simplot Co. or McCain Foods. He declined to comment on other contract details prior to completing[Read[Read More…]

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