Latest news stories from around the World

Lamb Weston reports financial and operating progress during fiscal third quarter 2022

Lamb Weston Holdings, Inc. announced its fiscal third quarter 2022 results and updated its fiscal 2022 outlook in early April. Tom Werner, President and CEO said in a press release:: “We continued to make financial and operating progress in the quarter through strong execution of pricing actions to manage significant input, manufacturing and supply chain cost inflation.”

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Crop Systems Ltd introduces ‘SmartSola’, giving store managers full control of solar energy produced on site

“Always at the forefront of technology, our latest innovation SmartSola has been launched giving our customers full control of the solar energy they produce,” according to Ray Andrews, Managing Director of Crop Systems Ltd in the UK. SmartSola™ is a new software program that looks at the power needed to run a store and, if that power is available from a renewable source, like solar or wind, utilises that power in preference to it being exported to the grid.

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How potato variety choice helps with nematode management

The significant threat posed by potato cyst nematode (PCN) in many potato-growing areas is making variety choice a key component of a sustainable production system. As Louise Impey reports for Farmers Weekly in the UK, with nematicides facing an uncertain future, varieties that offer both resistance and tolerance to the dominant nematode species, Globodera pallida, are becoming part of the solution.

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Call for Irish government support to save potato planting amid input-cost crisis

Potato planting is under threat as high input costs will lead to a decline in production unless growers are supported, the national potato chair of the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), Sean Ryan has said. As Rubina Freiberg reports for Agriland, the margin for growing potatoes has always been tight, but according to Ryan, the upcoming season will not be viable if growers don’t receive price increases. “Many growers will simply not plant,” he said.

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Calbee’s new ‘wet chips’ – fad or game changer?

Japanese snack companies are always looking for new and exciting ways to tantalise our taste buds, writes Oona McGee in this news article for SoraNews24. She says the country’s leading potato chip maker, Calbee, is ‘changing the game entirely’ by taking the crunch out of their potato chips, with a new product called “Nure Jaga“, which translates to “wet potato“.

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Soft rot in potatoes: Ten planting practices to reduce seed piece decay

“The soft rot bacterium that causes seed piece decay is very common, and it has an extensive host range. It survives in soil and surface waters. Soft rot in potatoes is caused by Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum,” says Dr Eugenia Banks, potato specialist with the Ontario Potato Board in Canada.

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Scottish Agronomy and Grampian Growers combine in PCN fight

A collaborative research project by two Scottish farming co-ops is seeking to mitigate the spread of plant parasitic nematodes in daffodils and potatoes. This joint project aims to investigate alternative cover crop options for managing soil-borne nematode populations and reducing the viability of PCN. The field trials will evaluate brassica bio-fumigants and nematode trap crops that can significantly limit nematode multiplication

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Tong highlights on-farm advancements and labour efficiencies at LAMMA

Tong Engineering is looking forward to returning to the NEC Birmingham on 4th & 5th May 2022, to exhibit once again at the UK’s largest farm machinery show LAMMA, on stand 7.668 in Hall 7. Since the industry last met at LAMMA back in 2020, the leading handing equipment manufacturer has launched several new products and equipment advances. And now, at the re-scheduled LAMMA event, Tong is set to showcase these latest developments.

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UK food production to shrink as input inflation hits 24%

Double-digit cost inflation is hitting every single enterprise of British agriculture, casting doubt on the sector’s ability to maintain food supplies in the year ahead. Latest figures from the AF buying group shows that no farming enterprise has been able to avoid the impact of soaring costs, with cereals and oilseed producers seeing the greatest increases at 28%, followed by potatoes, dairy, and beef and lamb producers – all hit by inflation of more than 20%.

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Solar solutions for potato stores

Potato stores require large amounts of energy, so is solar PV an attractive investment? Stephen Robb investigated for Irish Farmers Journal. Robb looks at two example potato farms with cold stores, storage sheds, processing/sorting facilities and packing facilities and analyses how installed solar PV systems impact on their overall operation and cost to maintain and operate.

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IFA: Good progress with potato planting in Ireland, consumption levels dropped in Europe

Recent dry weather has allowed good progress on maincrop preparations and plantings at this point. More growers are reported to be finished in the south east. Across Europe in general potato prices are holding quite well but consumption levels have dropped back since Covid restrictions have eased over the last few months. In France, it is reported that annual consumption levels have dropped back by about 10%.

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Market Analysis: The impact of Russia’s war on the potato industry of Ukraine

February 24, 2022 was a turning point for both Ukraine and the rest of the world, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine has undoubtedly turned the normal world order on its head. In this exclusive article, Fruit-Inform market analyst, Yevhen Kuzin, provides our readers with a bird’s eye view of the current and expected future situation of the potato industry in Ukraine – an industry seriously impacted by Russia’s war against the country.

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Queen’s Awards for Enterprise: Haith recognised for its Rota-Tip box tipping system

Haith has today (21 April 2022) been awarded its second Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Innovation category. The company has been recognised for developing its unique and market-leading Rota-Tip box tipping system. The Rota-Tip Up-Eject is the second Haith machine to receive a Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Innovation. The company’s Root Veg Polisher was recognised in 2010.

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CFIA to boost staff numbers in effort to ‘accelerate’ potato wart investigation on Prince Edward Island

A $12-million influx of federal dollars will help the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to boost staffing in Prince Edward Island and speed up its investigation into the spread of potato wart that prompted an 18-week lockout of P.E.I. fresh potatoes from the U.S. market. In an email to SaltWire Network on April 15, a representative of the federal agency said the new funding will allow the hiring of 35 new full-time staff.

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Bayer launches ‘GeoPotato’, a new geodata-driven early warning system for late blight in potatoes

Powered by satellite data and powerful analysis models, ‘GeoPotato’ is designed to enable preventive spraying, easier crop protection decisions, and improved farmer incomes. GeoPotato was launched by Bayer as a geodata-driven early warning system for late blight in potatoes, and has entered a full commercial roll-out in Bangladesh. It could potentially reach as many as 1 million smallholder farmers in the coming years.

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Webinar: ‘Growing Potatoes with Cover Crops’

The Living Lab Ontario project is hosting a webinar on Growing Potatoes with Cover Crops tomorrow, April 20th from 12:30 to 1:30 pm (ET). Attendees will be informed about the results of cover crop trials generated in Prince Edward Island through ‘Living Lab-Atlantic to Ontario’ producers.

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South Korea’s Lotteria burger chain seeking potato suppliers ‘other than U.S.’ due to supply chain frustrations

McDonald’s Korea and Lotteria are suffering from frozen potato shortages, scrambling to replace their French fries with chicken nuggets or cheese sticks due to supply chain problems amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Lotte GRS, operator of Lotteria, reportedly said it is seeking other global potato suppliers instead of the U.S., where the fast food franchise imports most of its frozen potatoes from.

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Crisis in Ukraine: Europlant seed potato distributor reflects on harrowing challenges

Potato News Today spoke with Mr. Yurii Dyak from Record-Agro LLC in the Ukraine earlier today. He is the Director of Record-Agro, official representative for Europlant in Ukraine. Mr Dyak informed us of the many challenges his company and its potato farming customers are facing at this time in Ukraine, including the bombing of one of his seed potato warehouses, and looting of farmers’ equipment and fuel by Russian soldiers.

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Canadian farmers worry about seeding season as fertilizer costs soar

Farmers across the Atlantic region in Canada say their operating costs have increased significantly with fertilizer imports from Russia under sanction, and some are looking for alternatives, according to a recent CBC News report. Fertilizer Canada CEO Karen Proud said about 85 to 90 per cent of all nitrogen fertilizers used in the eastern provinces come from Russia.

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Ukrainian farmers wear bulletproof vests to sow spring crops

Ukrainian farmers are wearing helmets and bulletproof vests to sow spring crops as their country’s war with Russia rages nearby. Fields have to be checked for Russian mines and other explosives prior to drilling. The authorities are clearing between 2,000 and 6,000 explosive objects each day.

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NPC CEO: ‘U.S. potato growers focus on the future with 2022 Policy Agenda’

Potato growers from across the country joined the National Potato Council (NPC) in DC during a tumultuous time for the industry during this year’s Washington Summit (Feb. 18 to March 2). “The impact of inflation on consumer goods and ag inputs, trade disputes with important industry partners, and the war in Ukraine were all on our minds as we sat down to set our policy agenda for 2022,” writes Kam Quarles, CEO of the National Potato Council, in this article.

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor & Publisher

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