Français Espanõl
Your Seed Potato Partner For North America

Your Seed Potato Partner For North America

News

Keep up to date with the latest HZPC news and global potato news.




Potato News

Gobbled up: German snack company bought UK-based Popchips

German food company Intersnack Group has snapped up UK-based potato crisps maker Popchips. The company  revealed that its British arm, KP Snacks, which makes KP nuts, Hula Hoops, Butterkist popcorn and Tyrrells crisps, had bought the company for an undisclosed sum.
7/19/2018

READ MORE

US: Potato exporter big on Colorado spuds; expanding to Mexico

Epic Produce Sales LLC will be involved in the Colorado potato deal, shipping from San Luis Valley storage and packing facilities until mid-August, according to Art Miller, president of the firm. Miller said about 95 percent of these spuds will be shipped into Mexico, consistent with Epic’s broad business plan. He noted that by using his Epic Potato brand he is increasing domestic sales. In late August and early September,
7/19/2018

READ MORE

Dutch retail chain working to boost sustainability and biodiversity in the Netherlands

Dutch retailer Albert Heijn has signed a cooperation agreement with some of the Netherlands’ largest agricultural companies to enhance biodiversity around potato production in the country and boost the industry’s sustainability. The group’s vice-president for produce, canned food, flowers and plants Said Belhassan was on hand to underline its commitment during a special signing ceremony, joining representatives from leading potato companies.
7/19/2018

READ MORE

Pesticide ban looming in the EU: Will diquat, thiram and pymetrozine be lost early 2019?

According to a news item published by the National Farmers Union (NFU) in the UK, the pesticides diquat, thiram and pymetrozine look set to be lost as a vote on pesticides legislation in a Brussel’s Appeal Committee last week delivered a ‘no opinion’ position. this decision will have significant implications for potato production in the UK. Diquat is much more effective than other available alternatives. Pymetrozine is an important insecticide which is used by most seed potato growers and in ware crops. 
7/18/2018

READ MORE

Potato prices in Ireland ‘set to soar’ as yields face up to 50% drop

The price of potatoes “will be significantly higher this year” according to the Country Crest co-founder, Michael Hoey. Speaking to AgriLand, Hoey explained that as a result of the difficult year  – which has led to the potato crop performing poorly – he believes “potatoes will go over the €500/box mark”.
7/18/2018

READ MORE

‘When it comes to soil testing, we’ve only scratched the surface’

Remi Schmaltz is CEO of Decisive Farming, a Canadian software program for farms offering precision agronomics, data management, crop marketing, and telematics services. In a recent article published on Agfunder.com, Schmaltz writes about soil analysis, where it started, and how it’s changing. “Soil analysis know-how has grown by leaps and bounds,” he writes.
7/18/2018

READ MORE

The mustard cure: Potato growers fight potato pests and boost yield with mustard crop

Potato growers in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island (PEI) say they’ve planted more mustard than ever in 2018. They’re finding the bright yellow crop does more than fight wireworms — it also gives them a nice bump in potato yields in fields where mustard was planted first. “We have a bit of a problem with wireworm out in this area, as do a lot of areas, and this seems to be giving us some help with that,” said potato grower Hans Wilting. “It’s also giving some good results on some other diseases too, soil-borne diseases. And as a rotational crop, it’s adding a lot to the soil.”
7/18/2018

READ MORE

Skin deep is great: The underrated nutritional value of potato skins

Potatoes are filling, delicious, and an incredibly diverse ingredient, which has made them a staple in plant-based diets. This is mainly due to the symbiotic and highly nutritious relationship between the potato meat, or ‘flesh’, and the potato skin. Potatoes are filling and versatile and the flesh offers a wide range of vitamins and minerals, as well as healthy carbs. Yet, potato skins are completely underrated. When it comes to the nutrition facts, what the meat lacks the skin provides and vice versa, including essential nutrients.
7/17/2018

READ MORE

HZPC: Growing demand for organic potatoes encourages breeding

Organic potatoes are on the rise, especially now that the large supermarkets have embraced the product. But what to do against the dreaded disease Phytophthora? ‘The market share of organic products is growing rapidly. There are now only a handful of varieties available that are resistant to late blight. However, the ‘technical’ restriction of these varieties is that they contain only one resistance gene. Breeder Peter Vos of HZPC is concerned.
7/17/2018

READ MORE

Canada: Newtec potato grader simultaneously sort by quality, size and shape

David Main, biologist at Agriculture and Agri-food Canada on Prince Edward Island, is evaluating a new potato grader for potatoes this year. The machine is a Celox-P-UHD from Newtec. Main says a number of potato growers on Prince Edward Island are using Newtec’s Celox sorting machines now. The grader is designed to sort potatoes by size, shape and quality in a single-stage process. It sorts washed potatoes directly, eliminating the need for pre-grading and minimising the need for manual labor.
7/17/2018

READ MORE

CIP study: Poor quality seed, bacterial wilt holding back higher potato yields in Africa

According to FAO statistics, potato production in Africa tripled from 1994 through 2011, from 8 to 24 million metric tons, but largely due to the increase of cropping area. A six month online doen by the International Potato Center (CIP) survey outlined twelve most important yield gap challenges out of an initial list of thirty. Poor quality seedwas the top-ranked yield gap cause identified by survey respondents, followed by bacterial wilt.
7/17/2018

READ MORE

Next best thing after mother's milk: Potato based infant formula

Nestle has applied for a patent for an infant formula based on potato protein microparticles. The company presents it as a naturally hypoallergenic infant formula that is suitable for infants with cow?s milk protein allergy. The Nestle patent describes an infant formula based on potato protein, which is naturally absent in the major allergens found in milk and soy. Accordingly, the described product may provide a naturally hypoallergenic infant formula that is suitable for infants with cow?s milk protein allergy.
7/12/2018

READ MORE

IPM: A powerful tool that offers protection for potato growers

Growers who practice Integrated Pest Management (IPM) can positively impact their crop production and their bottom line. Integrated strategies offer the strongest protection for potato growers, who need a complete plan for combating every element that threatens their crop. Managing obvious threats like insects, nematodes, diseases, and weeds are often at the forefront of IPM tactics, but taking steps to monitor water management and crop rotation are also important in keeping potatoes healthy and in maximizing yield and quality.
7/12/2018

READ MORE

Potatoey wrap: Printing specialist introduces eco-friendly magazine wrap made from potato starch

Birmingham-based direct mail fulfilment and print management services provider bakergoodchild has introduced a compostable and eco-friendly magazine polywrap produced from potato starch from waste potatoes. The biodegradable mailing wrapping material is being used by a number of bakergoodchild customers. The decomposable magazine packaging wrapper carries no oil-based materials, plastics or harmful toxins.
7/12/2018

READ MORE

Translating research into usable ideas: Strategic Farm water trials have ?helped me sleep at night?, says potato grower

Trials on water use completed at Elveden Farms in the UK as part of AHDB?s Farm Excellence programme have enabled Farms Director Andrew Francis to react with more accuracy during this summer?s heatwave. This was the verdict he delivered when addressing over 100 visitors to the farm for the Strategic Farm East Open Day on Thursday last week (5 July). ?I don?t think any of us are sleeping very well at the moment, given the conditions, but the work we did last year has helped me get some sleep,? he said.
7/12/2018

READ MORE

All about sustainability: Lamb Weston / Meijer supports potato growers with sustainable development plan

Sustainable potato production with healthy yields. This is the objective with which Lamb Weston / Meijer wants to support the company?s contract growers. This is why the Dutch based potato processor developed a comprehensive ?Sustainable Agriculture? plan in collaboration with the Center for Agriculture and Environment (CLM) in the Netherlands, which is now being turned into practice in collaboration with contract growers. The Sustainable Agriculture plan was launched this year in the Netherlands and will be rolled out internationally in the coming years.
7/12/2018

READ MORE

British potato farmers fear yields will be hit as mercury rises

Robert Strathern, who farms at Wormingford, near Colchester, said preliminary investigations suggest his early crop of potatoes, which he may begin harvesting as early as next week (July 9 onwards), could be down by 25 to 30% on the average. Like many farmers, he has faced a prolonged period of hot weather with no rain. ?Potatoes are the main crop we grow,? he said.
7/8/2018

READ MORE

Bookmaker ?Paddy Power? takes bets on Irish potato shortages

With the ongoing heatwave in Ireland, the lack of rain could potentially have an effect on Irish food production, in particular on the potato supply. There are indications that the price of fruit and vegetables could begin to rise as early as next week. Amid warnings from the likes of the Irish Farmers? Association (IFA), Irish bookmakers Paddy Power are now placing good odds on a potato shortage to hit Ireland soon.
7/8/2018

READ MORE

Useful publication: Guide to investing in a post-harvest line

If you are considering investing in a post-harvest processing line, this guide will make the process easier. It is not exhaustive, but will help you understand the process so you can find the perfect solution for your business. The Guide is published by Wyma, based in New Zealand.
7/8/2018

READ MORE

Potato early dying disease: A major yield-limiting factor in Canada

Potato early dying (PED) is also known as early die and early maturity wilt. This disease is endemic in many fields with a long history of potato production, writes Dr Khalil Al-Mughrabi, potato specialist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in New Brunswick province.
7/7/2018

READ MORE

PAA to meet in Boise

Idaho will host the Potato Association of America?s 102nd annual meeting, from July 22 to 26 at the Boise Centre in Boise. With a membership of over 500 individuals and 20 organizations, the association is comprised of potato industry personnel and growers, private and public potato researchers and university research and extension researchers.
7/7/2018

READ MORE

New Chairman of Belgapom calls for better coordination of potato chain, founding of inter-branch organisation

The annual general meeting of Belgapom, the Belgian potato trade and processing industry association, has appointed Marc Van Herreweghe as its chairman. He succeeds Marc Seru who in accordance with the articles of association was not available for re-election after two terms of 3 years. Marc Van Herreweghe is the CEO of the family-owned potato processing company Mydibel in Mouscron.
7/7/2018

READ MORE

McCain NZ pilot programme puts the power into potatoes

The humble potato is in for a shocking multi-million dollar makeover in New Zealand. An industry pilot programme worth almost $16.8 million, is being trialled at McCain Foods in Washdyke, Timaru, in what has been described as ?electrocuting potatoes?. The three month test of the new Pulsed Electric Field Technology (PEF) machine, from Germany, began in Timaru on Wednesday and involves industrial-scale food processing of the popular french fry.
7/7/2018

READ MORE

Consumer trends put spotlight on blemish diseases

It?s not a surprise that the market for colored potato varieties, (red and yellows as well as fingerlings) has been on the rise in the last several years. What may be less obvious are the effects those market trends have on managing diseases. In the Red River Valley that means being more vigilant for blemish diseases like silver scurf.
7/6/2018

READ MORE

UK facing ?crisp crisis? as ?potato crops wrecked by Beast from the East and blistering heatwave?

We have already been told beer and soft drinks could run out due to a CO2 shortage. And now, we are facing a ?crisp crisis?, it is reported. The head of a leading independent crisp makers has warned the heatwave ? following on from the Beast from the East last winter ? has played havoc with potato crops. Alex Albone, co-founder of Pipers Crisps, issued the warning just weeks after concerns over beer and soft drinks running out after Europe was hit by a carbon dioxide shortage.
7/6/2018

READ MORE

Ireland?s potato prices to rise as weather affects yields

Consumers face increasing potato prices as the weather causes havoc with this year?s crop. A combination of the snow and blizzard conditions in February and March, the ongoing heatwave, and a dearth of rain will seriously affect crop yields, according to farmers. Eddie Doyle, of the potato committee of the Irish Farmers? Association (IFA), told the Irish Independent that potatoes had to be planted late this year.
7/5/2018

READ MORE

US frozen potato exports up 8% in April; fresh exports down 33%

According to data released by Potatoes USA, exports of frozen potato products increased 8% in volume and 9% in value in April 2018 compared to April 2017. Dehy exports were up 21% in volume and 21% in value. Fresh exports were down 33% in volume and 13% in value. Frozen exports are up 1% for the July ? June marketing year through April, with dehy up 5% year to date and fresh up 5% for the marketing year.
7/5/2018

READ MORE

Northern Ireland farmers hoping for rain as heatwave threatens to destroy crops

Farmers in Northern Ireland say they are praying for rain to avoid a disastrous harvest. The extended heatwave ? which could last for another fortnight ? is continuing to cause problems. Yesterday Armagh Observatory said it had recorded the warmest June since 1846. And June 27 saw the hottest temperatures ever noted by the observatory since it started taking daily measurements in 1795.
7/5/2018

READ MORE

UNIKA welcomes PotatoEurope back in Germany for the 2018 event

During a recent public address in Frankfurt, the Deputy Chairman of the German potato industry union (Union der Deutschen Kartoffelwirtschaft e.V. ? UNIKA), Dr. Heinrich Bhm, said: ?We look forward to having PotatoEurope back in Germany in 2018 at Rittergut Bockerode, near Hanover, and feel UNIKA is an ideal partner for this leading technical trade fair for the potato industry. At the event, we will offer a central starting point for visitors, and will powerfully present the German potato industry.?
7/5/2018

READ MORE

Belgium: Potato vending machines sprouting up in small villages

Potatoes occupy an exalted position in the cuisine of West Flanders. But what if you need some spuds after hours? Well, you?re in luck?rural Belgium has you covered. Vending machines have sprouted up in small villages around the countryside, where anyone can purchase potatoes and onions around the clock.
7/3/2018

READ MORE

US: Consumer trends puts spotlight on blemish diseases

It?s not a surprise that the market for colored potato varieties, (red and yellows as well as fingerlings) has been on the rise in the last several years. What may be less obvious are the effects those market trends have on managing diseases. In the Red River Valley that means being more vigilant for blemish diseases like silver scurf.
7/3/2018

READ MORE

New print magazine aimed at the global potato industry announced

A new print magazine aimed at the international potato industry will be published in early September this year. The magazine will be titled ?Global Potato News?. We are interested then to hear from individuals and companies who might want to submit an article, or place an advertisement in the magazine.
7/3/2018

READ MORE

Canada: Kenyan delegation given up-close look at Prince Edward Island potato industry

A delegation from Kenya is turning to the potato industry in P.E.I. to help develop their important crop back home. ?We?ve been told big stories about potato production in Canada, especially in Prince Edward Island,?? says Kiraitu Murungi, governor of Meru County, the top producer of potatoes in Kenya. ?So, we thought this was the best place for us to come for a study tour of potatoes.??
7/3/2018

READ MORE

International potato industry returns to Germany for PotatoEurope 2018

PotatoEurope 2018, the event for the international potato industry, returns to Germany on 12th and 13th September. PotatoEurope , which is an annual exhibition, is held in Germany every four years. This top trade fair for potato professionals, organized by the DLG (German Agricultural Society) in cooperation with the German Potato Industry Union (UNIKA), will again take place this year at Rittergut Bockerode Estate in Springe-Mittelrode, near Hanover.
7/2/2018

READ MORE

Upbeat: Canadian potato growers feeling cautiously optimistic this season

Potato growers across Canada are reportedly feeling optimistic this season as increased demand for their product has created some newfound enthusiasm. The economic crash of 2008 reduced demand for Canadian spuds in some markets and the industry struggled to regain its lost footing. With the 2018 growing season well under way, there now seems to be a renewed sense of optimism among many Canadian potato growers. Kevin MacIsaac, general manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada (UPGC), says the increase is largely attributable to processing companies like McCain and Simplot expanding their production lines in this country.
6/26/2018

READ MORE

Drone tech in practice: Belgian service provider employs drones to improve assessment of seed varieties

As Belgium?s biggest service provider for agriculture and horticulture, AVEVE is continuously looking for innovative solutions. In plant breeding, specialists are looking to improve the objective quality assessment of new crop seed varieties. With mapEO, a new image processing solution for drone based phenotyping, AVEVE specialists can scale up their seed and agronomy expertise and offer the best possible varieties for every farmer. In one of their experimental fields in Belgium AVEVE grows 350 different plant varieties on 2,100 trial plots.
6/26/2018

READ MORE

Scots charging: New and ambitious growth strategy announced for the potato, vegetable and fruit sector in Scotland

A group of leading businesses and organisations in Scotland?s potato, fruit, and vegetable industry have come together for the first time to create an ambitious new growth strategy for the sector. Announced over the weekend, Planting the Seeds of Growth identifies the key recommendations to grow the potato, fruit, and vegetable sector by 2030, bringing not just economic benefits but benefits to the nation?s health and to the environment as well.
6/25/2018

READ MORE

28,000t of potatoes from a family farm in Ireland

Over the past 45 years, O?Shea Farms has progressed from a family partnership of four brothers ? Dick, John, Samus and Joe O?Shea ? to a business with a turnover of ?60 million per year. The company processes 28,000t of potatoes each year at its base in Piltown, Co. Kilkenny. Iverk Produce, a sister company, distributes 90% of the potatoes and vegetables produced to Aldi. O?Shea Farms is also a sole supplier of carrots to SuperValu. Iverk Produce was formed in the 1980s.
6/25/2018

READ MORE

Let?s automate, mate: South Australian potato company partners with automation specialists to bring field to fork

The South Australian Potato Company, founded by the Raschella family in that region, has been supplying potatoes for ?every recipe, every occasion and every season for more than 20 years,? they say. Dealing with more than 60, 000 tons of potatoes annually obviously requires quality automation by reliable suppliers to ensure always-on productivity and extreme care with this wholesome produce. When looking to kit out its factory ? which does everything from washing and sorting to weighing and packaging potatoes ? The South Australian Potato Company eventually looked to SMC as its preferred supplier.
6/25/2018

READ MORE

Research, South, Central America, Trends Edit Spain: New potato prices remain high in the domestic market

The Spanish potato campaign started in late May with the harvest of the first new potatoes from Seville. Frequent rains in the winter and spring not only caused a delay of about a month in the harvest of the first new potatoes, but also resulted in a 40% drop in the volume. ?The acreage devoted to ​​potato cultivation has been reduced by around 20% this year. If we take into account that the yields have been 30% lower in general in Seville, the volumes should drop by around 40%,? said Jos Pelez Izquierdo, manager of Sevillana de Patatas.
6/23/2018

READ MORE

Potato store management is ?a complex process,? says author of new guide for store managers

A digital version of the Third Edition of the Store Manager?s Guide is now available and can be downloaded as a pdf file from the AHDB Potatoes website in the UK (a print version will be available in autumn 2018). The Guide was written by Adrian Cunnington, Head of Crop Storage Research at Sutton Bridge Crop Storage Research. Cunnington writes in the introduction to the Guide that potato storage is a key element of modern-day potato production, looking to fulfill the demands of many markets.
6/23/2018

READ MORE

Idaho potato growers optimistic about season

Idaho potato growers are optimistic about the season ahead, given the ideal growing conditions the state has experienced. ?Harvest is expected to commence in Idaho in the middle of July,? said Colin Gibson of 20/20 Produce Sales. ?The western part of the state will begin first as they have more heat units than the eastern part and therefore growers plant earlier. They are usually about three to four weeks ahead of eastern Idaho.? Gibson noted that weather conditions have been very favorable, with temperate conditions and just a moderate amount of rain.
6/23/2018

READ MORE

World Potato Congress: Abstract Book now available online

The Abstract Book, containing abstracts of presentations delivered in May during the 10th World Potato Congress in Cuzco, Peru has been published online, and can now be downloaded as a pdf file from the World Potato Congress Inc website. In the Preface to the 168 page Abstract Book it is said that the themes ?Biodiversity, Food Security and Business? represent what Peru, as the host country and the most important center of origin of the potato, can show and share with the world.
6/22/2018

READ MORE

Field walks and open days: British potato farmers invited to come get the boots dirty in demonstration fields

AHDB Potatoes in the UK will be hosting several events during the coming weeks when growers will be able to see the practical results of dedicated potato research work in real life and how it pans out in growers? fields. Strategic Farm West Field Walk will be hosted on 28 June. With their first year under their belt, Farm Manager, Matthew Wallace will be providing a fresh focus on research carried out at Heal Farms in Shropshire last season.
6/22/2018

READ MORE

Spotting airborne foes: Novel spore trap designed to detect and identify key crop pathogens

An automated spore trap has been developed by researchers and industry partners in the UK which is said to have to potential to ?revolutionise disease monitoring in agricultural crops.? The device, which was developed as part of an AHDB project led by Rothamsted Research, provides near real-time information on the presence of airborne spores and could potentially help farmers target fungicide applications better.
6/22/2018

READ MORE

McCain considering to build new potato processing plant in Idaho

McCain Foods USA, one of the world?s largest manufacturers of frozen potato products, is considering building a facility in Caldwell, Idaho, USA, and bringing as many as 544 jobs to the area. The company received approval Monday night for $400,000 in grants from the Caldwell Urban Renewal Agency. McCain Foods is considering a 17-acre property to build a proposed 164,000-square-foot facility, four times the size of Caldwell?s Walmart Neighborhood Market.
6/22/2018

READ MORE

Great potato, great times: Idaho is building a better Big Potato

To say that Sharolyn and her husband Chris Schofield are the world?s top big potato experts is no overstatement. They have built two for the New Year?s Idaho Potato Drop and now two for the Potato Commission. The latest ? a four-ton potato ? will begin touring the nation Saturday, the star of the Potato Commission?s multi-million dollar promotion effort that will take it to 70 events this year. Since fall, Idaho?s new Big Idaho Potato has been Schofield Designs? full-time job.
6/21/2018

READ MORE

Research in action: PCN advisory tool under scrutiny

Four potato varieties not known to be resistant to white potato cyst nematode (Globodera pallida) have given much better yields than eight others in the first year of a two-season SARIC-funded research project in the UK. The latest work aims to improve AHDB?s potato cyst nematode population advisory tool, explains Matthew Back, of Harper Adams University.
6/21/2018

READ MORE

Plants in the bag: PepsiCo India to launch plant-based packaging for Lay?s chips

Rising concerns around plastic pollution have compelled FMCG companies to rethink their packaging solutions. Food and beverage major PepsiCo, for instance, announced it will launch the first-ever 100% compostable, plant-based packaging for Lay?s and Kurkure snacks products, this year. ?As a responsible leader in the food and beverage industry, our Performance with Purpose 2025 goal is to design all packaging to be recoverable or recyclable, and supports increased recycling of plastic waste,? said Ahmed ElSheikh, president & CEO at PepsiCo India.
6/21/2018

READ MORE

It takes an industry to identify and solve problems, says recipient of World Potato Congress award

Gary Secor, a professor in North Dakota State University?s Plant Pathology Department, is one of three scientists worldwide to receive the 2018 Industry Award from the World Potato Congress. He received the award during the 10th World Potato Congress, which was held last month in Cusco, Peru. During his career, Secor has published information on numerous potato diseases that have had a substantial impact on the industry. He has discovered several new diseases, including the zebra chip. In addition, he has authored more than 91 publications and 12 book chapters
6/20/2018

READ MORE