Varieties

ADAPT project to develop multi-stress tolerant potato varieties embarks on final phase

The Horizon 2020 EU project ADAPT, which includes Europatat, is developing multi-stress tolerant potato varieties to withstand climate change. The final phase involves high-throughput phenotyping of Desirée and Lady Rosetta varieties at PSI facilities in Czechia. Previous field and glasshouse trials assessed tolerance to heat, drought, and waterlogging. Data from these trials will update stress response models and inform future breeding for climate-resilient potatoes.

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Chinese scientists achieve new breakthrough in hybrid potato breeding

Chinese scientists have made a breakthrough in hybrid potato breeding using evolutionary genomics to identify deleterious mutations. This discovery may shorten the breeding process and produce better potato varieties. The researchers also developed a whole-genome prediction model, improving trait prediction accuracy by 25-45%. This breakthrough could increase potato breeding efficiency by 50% and be applied to other crops.

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New potato breeding program on the grow in Northeast Florida

Researchers at the UF/IFAS Agricultural Extension Center in Hastings are set to launch a program that could change the game in the future for local spud growers. They will be applying knowledge to develop new potato varieties geared to better withstand Florida’s challenging production conditions.

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‘Steering towards a bright future’: HZPC Americas Corp. names new President

Today, HZPC Americas Corp. announced its new president, Aron Derbidge. Beginning May 1, 2023, Aron will step into the role to lead HZPC operations across the United States and Canada. Aron brings more than 20 years of experience in developing and marketing seed potatoes as well as supporting businesses in commercial growth across the U.S. and Canada. “I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to help advance an industry that has given me so much,” said Aron.

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The Kingsman potato: Cygnet PB to expand commercial trials in the U.S. for this high-yielding, climate-resilient variety

Launched in 2017, the potato variety Kingsman has developed quickly in popularity to become Scotland-based potato breeder Cygnet PB Ltd.’s first globally successful variety. After two seasons of field production with CSS Farms, Kingsman exceeded seed crop yield expectations, prompting Cygnet PB Ltd to involve additional partners for commercial trials in 2023.

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HZPC Americas welcomes Dustin Wageman as Product Manager

Dustin Wageman brings with him over 10 years of experience of chemical sales and business management in the Pacific Northwest. “I’m happy to have Dustin join our team. His natural ability to understand the needs of farmers combined with his entrepreneurial approach and passion for potatoes will complement our growing team of seed potato professionals.”, says Jeff Scramlin, President of HZPC Americas Corp.

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Smoke exposure linked to smaller, misshapen potatoes, according to Univ of Idaho, BSU study

Potato plants exposed to extreme smoke produced lower marketable yields than smoke-free plants, according to preliminary data from a joint University of Idaho and Boise State University study. Results differed based on variety, with heavy wildfire smoke exposure being linked to smaller Clearwater Russets and causing more unusable and misshapen Russet Burbanks. The project involved pumping artificially emulated wildfire smoke onto potato plots covered by plastic.

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Israeli company secures funding for technology to express egg protein in potatoes

The funding will support PoLoPo’s technology platform, starting with replicating ovalbumin, the protein found in egg white. The company says it expects to have prototypes in the coming 18 months, including protein-rich potato tubers and ovalbumin functional samples. PoLoPo says its ovalbumin will be identical to chicken egg ovalbumin in terms of functionality, nutritional value, and protein sequence.

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PepsiCo brings hybrid potato seed to Ethiopia

Senselet Food Processing PLC (Senselet), PepsiCo’s Ethiopia-based foods unit, has teamed up with Dutch hybrid potato innovator Solynta to bring hybrid true potato seeds (HTPS) to Ethiopia, as Zachary Sosland reports for Baking Business. PepsiCo already has invested $40 million in Ethiopian potato chip production, and this new partnership makes it the leading Ethiopian potato processing company.

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HZPC awarded Royal predicate on 125th anniversary: A recognition of its impact on the international potato industry

On Monday 27 February 2023, potato breeder HZPC celebrated its 125th anniversary. For HZPC, this was a day with an extra golden edge. Dr. A.A.M. Brok, Commissioner of the King of the Province of Friesland, also presented HZPC with the certificate for the predicate “Royal” on Monday afternoon in Joure. With the predicate Royal, HZPC has now become “Royal HZPC Group”, including the subsidiaries STET, HZPC, and ZOS.

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From pipeline to commercialization: The National Chip Program’s impact on potato breeding

The National Potato Council (NCP) in the U.S. aims to improve potato chipping varieties in the pipeline toward commercialization and has brought more collaboration among potato growers and breeders in different regions. The program also helps enhance the trial process through reduced development time and increased candidates’ strength, Potatoes USA says in its February 2023 newsletter.

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HZPC expects turnover to grow during 2022/23 financial year

Potato breeding company HZPC, is poised to achieve its expected results for the financial year 2022-2023. HZPC expects its turnover to grow 10% over last year (then 352 million euros) with a gross margin of 66 million euros (during the last financial year it was 63.9 million euros). Says Gerard Backx, CEO of HZPC: “The increase is mainly thanks to areas outside Europe, where licensed cultivation takes place. Mainly in Asia and America.”

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The beloved chip: Univ of Idaho Extension part of trials to select varieties for making potato chips

March 14 is National Potato Chip Day, and U of I makes a significant contribution toward filling bags with America’s No. 1 snack food. Frying snack foods for careful evaluation is a recurring chore among the scientists with the U of I and USDA-Agricultural Research Service collaborative potato breeding program based in Aberdeen. The team devotes the bulk of its time toward developing russet potatoes for making French fries, but the pipeline also includes a steady stream of spuds for chipping.

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Solynta and FreshCrop sign hybrid potato collaboration agreement in Kenya

Solynta, hybrid potato breeding technology company from The Netherlands and FreshCrop Limited, Kenya’s largest producer of seed tubers, have signed an agreement to collaborate on the development of hybrid true potato innovation in Kenya. By joining forces, the companies will work closely to facilitate future introduction of high quality hybrid potato seed tubers produced from hybrid true potato seeds.

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Princesa Amandine potato awarded 2023 Flavor of the Year in Spain

The Princesa Amandine potato has been awarded the ‘Flavor of the Year’ for the second year in a row – a distinction given by consumers in blind testing carried out by independent sensory laboratories. “Obtaining the Flavor of the Year award for the second consecutive year is a confirmation that our Princesa Amandine potato’s fine, rich, and creamy flavor have won over Spanish consumers,” said Jean Michel Beranger, Managing Director of the Princesa Amandine Iberian Association.

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‘Johnny Potato Seed’: This farmer wants you to grow a new potato strain

Also known as ‘Johnny Potato Seed’, this small farmer turned a plot of land in Wisconsin into the epicenter of an international potato breeding movement, writes Bevin Cohen in a news article for Modern Farmer. Caravati founded the Kenosha Potato Project (KPP) in 2007. KPP quickly grew into an online community of thousands of both novice and experienced potato growers from around the world.

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Scottish scientists discover potato varieties resistant to potato cyst nematodes

The findings of a ground-breaking farm trial investigating potato varieties resistant to crop-destroying potato cyst nematodes (PCN) were revealed last week at the James Hutton Institute (JHI) in Invergowrie. Thanks to scientists from JHI, SoilEssentials, Scottish Agronomy, SRUC and SASA working collaboratively on this Scottish Government-funded project, new varieties of potato have been shown to be both highly resistant to PCN, and suitable for growth in Scotland’s climate.

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Blight resistant potatoes: Marketing ploy or real?

This article was written by Amy Skea of Potato House. “As with any industry, research and development is key, and the UK seed potato industry is no exception and is always progressing.  We at Skea Organics and Potato House are proud to be involved in this, and this year we hosted some organic potato demonstrations  with several of the leading names in the industry involved.”

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Harnessing the power of wild potatoes to feed a climate-challenged world, while reducing agrochemical use

Scientists in South America are tapping the power of wild potatoes to breed disease-resistant and resilient varieties. The recent release of the International Potato Center’s (CIP) disease-resistant CIP-Matilde variety in Peru is the result of years of work and investment in conserving and studying potato wild relatives and using them to breed potatoes that combine characteristics that consumers want with the wild potatoes’ ability to cope with diseases and climate extremes.

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Video: CIP – Innovations towards sustainable agri-food system transformation

For almost 50 years, the International Potato Center’s (CIP) research and development work in potato and sweetpotato agri-food systems has contributed to greater food and nutrition security, and economic growth, while conserving today’s biodiversity for the future. This video brings together some of the most achievements and impacts for millions of small-scale farmers and resource-poor consumers worldwide.

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ADAPT: Field trials conducted in Austria to find stress-tolerant potato varieties

The Horizon 2020 EU project Accelerated Development of multiple-stress tolerAnt PoTato (ADAPT) aims at developing new strategies to make potatoes fit for the challenging growth conditions of the future. A total of 16 varieties were selected for trials in Austria with a focus on representing abiotic stress resistance. Eleven varieties obtained from potato breeders involved in ADAPT, namely HZPC, Solana, Meijer and NOES, are also being tested for drought and heat tolerance in Spain and the Netherlands.

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Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse


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