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Your Seed Potato Partner For North America

Your Seed Potato Partner For North America

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




Potato News

Colombia questioned about anti-dumping rules against Dutch potato sector

The Netherlands has appealed to the European Commission (EC). They want the Commission to address the Colombian authorities about their anti-dumping regulations against the Dutch potato sector. According to the Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation in the Netherlands, Sigrid Kaag: ?On 3 August 2017, the Colombian authority instigated an anti-dumping procedure against frozen potato products from the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium.
3/12/2018

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New study finds that potato plants can be primed to tolerate heat stress

Potatoes are particularly vulnerable to increased temperature, considered to be the most important uncontrollable factor affecting growth and yield. Elevated temperature is known to affect multiple processes in potato plant physiology including tuber development and yield. In a new study published recently in the journal Planta, scientists at the James Hutton Institute and the University of St Andrews say they have discovered that potatoes, in common with many plant species, undergo a powerful adaptive response that enables survival at temperatures that are lethal when plants are not ?primed?.
3/12/2018

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New European regulation on acrylamide: What manufacturers should know

A new EU regulation on acrylamide is setting benchmark values in several categories that will affect the bakery and snacks sectors. Peter Mller, technical service manager, Food, at Novozymes examines the upcoming challenges facing manufacturers. The new European regulation on acrylamide reduction will go into effect on April 11, 2018. Acrylamide is a suspected carcinogen that forms when starchy foods are treated at high heat.
3/12/2018

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Potato Cyst Nematode results: How reliable are yours?

So your Potato Cyst Nematode (PCN) tests have come back negative. Good news?or is it? That largely depends on how the land was sampled and how the samples were analysed. Scottish Agronomy?s Eric Anderson warns that approaches vary enormously so results can be very misleading. The world of seed potato growing is relatively black and white with a statutory process that provides a prescriptive method for PCN sampling and the EU PCN Directive, which must be followed. But for ware growers there is no such statutory industry standard.
3/12/2018

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Potato marketing trends in the US for 2018

In this article, The Packer magazine provides a bird?s eye view on marketing trends as reported by several of the big players in fresh potato marketing and promotion in the US. Demand for yellow potatoes has been up the first part of 2018 compared with a year ago, said Doug Posthuma, buying manager and national salesman for Friesland, Wis.-based Alsum Farms. Paul Dolan, general manager of Associated Potato Growers, Grand Forks, N.D., said the company has had good success with 5-pound and 3-pound bags of red potatoes this year
3/12/2018

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US fresh potato exports show double-digit growth

Led by double-digit growth in Canada and Mexico, U.S. fresh potato exports soared 17% in value last year. U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics reveal 2017 U.S. fresh potato exports totaled $238.8 million, up 17% from a year ago. Volume of fresh potatoes exported in 2017 totaled 544,624 metric tons, up 11% from 2016. Canada was the top-ranked export market for U.S. fresh potatoes
3/10/2018

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Trendy Chips: New report shows spicy and unusual flavors big hit

Snacking is expected to witness increased consumer preference in the coming years. Facts regarding the growing shift towards snacking is revealed in a new research report added to the repository of Market Research Hub (MRH) titled ?Potato and Tortilla Chips U.S. February, 2018′. The report covers a brief analysis that shows consumption trends of potato and tortilla chips in the U.S.
3/10/2018

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Nab the Scab: South African specialist?s views on how to deal with a nasty potato disease

Powdery scab of potatoes is a serious disease that is a thorn in the side of many a potato grower around the world. This is also the case in South Africa, one of the biggest potato producing countries on the African continent, where potatoes are being cultivated year round in sixteen different geographical areas of the country. In a recent article published on the website of the Afrikaans language agriculture magazine Landbou Weekblad, the views of a respected South African potato specialist on powdery scab are shared.
3/10/2018

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France: ?Potato market is facing challenges?

Touquet Savour is a big player on the French potato market. The company represents 30 producers and annually produces 25,000 tonnes of potatoes. Alexis Dequidt, from Touquet Savour: ?Like in the Netherlands, the French potato market has been facing some difficulties this campaign, for different reasons. Firstly, last year? oversupply has lowered the prices. Secondly, the potato consumption has reached a lower level. This has to do with a decreasing popularity of the ware potato in general.?
3/10/2018

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Zebra chip pathogen found in Canada?s Alberta province

Zebra chip disease, which causes harmless but unsightly stripes in potato chips, costs producers millions of dollars annually in New Zealand and the United States. Now the zebra chip pathogen has been found for the first time in Western Canada. To be clear, explains University of Lethbridge professor Dan Johnson, who headed the Canadian potato psyllid and zebra chip monitoring network, zebra chip has not yet begun to affect potato production in Canada.
3/9/2018

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Wind farms positively impact crops, study says

Iowa State University researchers have found that wind turbines located in agricultural fields are a plus for the crops growing around them. The overall effects on crops growing in wind farms appear to be positive said Gene Takle, Iowa State agronomy professor. Takle says wind blowing across a field without turbines creates a certain turbulence that carries moisture from the transpiring crop, which rises into the atmosphere and pulls down cooler, drier air.
3/9/2018

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New product to offer ?greater efficacy against tuber-borne Rhizoctonia?

At its annual potato agronomists? conference on 25th January, Bayer launched a new potato tuber treatment ? Emesto Prime DS ? that will be available for British growers to use on this year?s plantings. Introducing the product Bayer?s campaign manager for root crops Edward Hagues described it as the new, improved tuber treatment. ?Compared with Monceren DS ? the long-standing powder standard ? Emesto Prime DS brings even greater efficacy against tuber-borne Rhizoctonia.
3/9/2018

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Potato industry in New Zealand valued at close to a billion dollars, CEO says

In the latest Strategic Update report issued by Potatoes New Zealand, CEO Chris Claridge writes that the 2017 calendar year values and volumes are now available and the news is very positive. ?Our total industry value to Dec 2017 including domestic retail sales, food service such as restaurants takeaway chips and exports, is closing on a Billion dollars per annum,? Claridge says.
3/9/2018

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Sheltered: Limited impact on potatoes in British stores following cold spell, report says

The latest Potato Weekly report issued by AHDB Potatoes has been published earlier today, and the full report can be accessed on the AHDB website. In the report growers are reminded to take note of the upcoming Strategic Potato Farm event in East Yorks next week. It is noted that potato stores have done their job the past week and quality is generally reported to be holding up well after last week?s cold spell. Produce in ambient stores not reporting any major issues.
3/9/2018

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Idaho Potato Commission announces value of 2017 crop: 22,7% higher

Idaho, the United State?s top producing potato state since 1957, reached a new crop high in 2017. According to the US Department of Agriculture, the preliminary estimated value for the Idaho Potato crop is $1.2 billion, a 22.7% leap from the previous year. Harvested acreage was down 5% and yields were down 1.2%. Foodservice operators can thank a large crop of quality Idaho potatoes (approximately 13 billion pounds) for continued year round availability.
3/7/2018

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Prices versus plantings: A British potato market insight

The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board?s (AHDB) Amber Cottingham analyses the seasonal relationship between price and plantings and asks how potato farmers can apply this knowledge to business planning. Potatoes are one of the most volatile crops grown in the UK, with prices easily shifting 50 a tonne and more within a season, never mind between seasons.
3/7/2018

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Combination of mineral oils and insecticides to minimize PVY spread on seed potato farms

The use of mineral oils and a combined approach of mineral oils and crop barriers have been under the spotlight the past number of years around the world as potential practical in-season solutions to aphid control. Mineral oils are an attractive option as they can reduce toxicity to both humans and the environment; they can be applied with existing spray equipment and potentially reduce PVY spread.
3/7/2018

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Spore trapping: Another tool in managing potato late blight

According to potato expert Prof Khalil Al-Mughrabi, ‎Plant Pathologist & Adjunct Professor at the ‎Government of New Brunswick in Canada, a more rational approach to late blight control is based on measured data such as the amount of pathogen in the air and the probability of infection by the pathogen based on weather conditions, could help growers, specialists and industry consultants to use fungicides more efficiently. Spore traps can help in this regard.
3/7/2018

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Australian potato market opens up in Indonesia after trade discussions

Australian potato growers are winning new access to valuable Indonesian markets after a decade-long campaign opened the potential to export up to 85,000 tonnes of seed potatoes with a market value of some $110 million annually. A new agreement to take certified seed potatoes from South Australia and Victoria in Indonesia was made at recent trade discussions in Melbourne,
3/7/2018

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Grocerants and Gen Z: Looking for the future for potatoes

You may not have heard of a ?grocerant,? but you?re almost certainly among the growing number of Americans who have eaten in one. It?s part of a fundamental change in eating patterns, and one the U.S. potato industry is well positioned to benefit from, an industry official said. ?More people are eating out, at bars and restaurants (and other establishments), more so than at supermarkets,? Rachael Lynch said. ?It?s a huge opportunity for us.?
3/6/2018

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Silver scurf: Great name, but bad for spuds

Fans of colorful, alliterative language may like ?silver scurf.? Not Red River Valley potato growers; they see the crop disease as a growing threat. ?I?m getting more questions about it at harvest,? said Andy Robinson, Fargo, N.D.-based potato extension agronomist for both North Dakota State University and the University of Minnesota. He helped to organize potato educational sessions during the recent International Crop Expo in Grand Forks, N.D., and brought in Amanda Gevens to speak on the crop disease on Feb. 22.
3/6/2018

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Potato processor Agristo invests 200 million in french fry factory

Potato processor Agristo has invested 200 million euro in a new French fry factory in Wielsbeke, Belgium. The family business hopes it can break into the global top five this way. ?This is the most innovative French fry factory in the world?, Filip Wallays, who runs the company alongside Hannelore Raes told De Tijd. Pretty much everything is automated, which requires only fifteen people per shift, with five shifts in total, to operate the plant.
3/6/2018

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The Irish Potato Famine ? could it happen again?

Ireland wasn?t always dependent on potatoes, but in the decades leading up to the famine, more farmers started growing potatoes. As a crop, potatoes are inexpensive and high-yielding. As a food, they are packed with calories and nutrients. The Irish potato famine occurred in the mid-1800s, the result of a fungal disease. Let?s look at the scientific factors that contributed to the spread of the fungal disease, and how such a tragedy can be prevented in the future.
3/6/2018

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Eat purple potatoes to cut your colon cancer risk, study finds

Enjoying a diet that includes plenty of vegetables is great for your health, but a daily dose of purple potatoes may help in the prevention colon cancer, according to a new study conducted on pigs. Understanding the compounds found in these foods and how they break down in the digestive tract could be crucial for finding new colon cancer treatments, researchers say. Scientists at Pennsylvania State University found that a diet rich in colorful fruits and vegetables may prevent or stop colon cancer and bowel inflammatory diseases in pigs.
3/1/2018

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US: RPE chosen as exclusive marketing partner for CSS Farms? Agri-Pack subsidiary

CSS Farms, a multi-state agriculture company producing onions and chip and specialty potatoes, and RPE ? category leader and year-round grower/shipper of potatoes and onions ? announce the selection of RPE as exclusive marketing partner of Agri-Pack, a CSS Farms subsidiary and Pasco, WA-based grower-packer-distributor of potatoes and onions. CSS Farms Managing Partner Reagan Grabner said the partnering organizations share a collaborative mindset, strategic approach and entrepreneurial spirit, noting RPE and CSS Farms have worked effectively together since 2010 as joint venture partners in Tasteful Selections.
2/28/2018

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West Australian farmers have lost millions one year on from tomato potato psyllid outbreak

Two West Australian farmers say they have each lost more than $1 million and have been forced to downsize their operations in the 12 months since the tomato potato psyllid was discovered near Perth. It has been a year since the Australia-first discovery, which is regarded as one of the most serious bio-security incidents in Western Australia?s horticultural history. A South West potato grower has halved operations and is restructuring his business after being forced to dump more than $1.1m of potatoes that could not leave the state.
2/28/2018

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Sprout control: A Canadian update on the use of MH and CIPC

Use of the growth regulators MH (maleic hydrazide) and CIPC (chlorpropham) are integral to the potato industry, but there is always room for improvement ? and even new avenues of use as the chipping industry evolves. According to Mark VanOostrum, potato supply and quality manager at WD Potato Limited in Ontario, growers are generally very careful to apply MH at the right time, but he says there is a tendency to be too late with MH application timing compared with too early. ?That curbs the potential benefits, often due to the fact we usually time our MH with a fungicide application on a seven-day interval,? he explains.
2/28/2018

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Reach for your pocket: Rapid tests provide cost-effective solution for potato disease diagnosis

Getting a definitive confirmation of the presence of which disease is affecting a crop is important in preventing a pathogen from becoming a bigger problem. ?An easy way of getting a confirmation of the presence of a potato disease is by using rapid tests such as those from Pocket Diagnostic,? says the company?s Sales and Marketing Executive, Malcolm Briggs. ?Rapid tests use the same lateral flow immunoassay technology as pregnancy tests and are a cost-effective option for potato disease diagnosis?.
2/26/2018

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Potato Market Update: Lay of the land in Canada

In an interview with Spudsmart magazine, the general manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada (UPGC), Kevin MacIsaac, says that J.R. Simplot?s $40 million processing plant expansion plans in Manitoba province will have a big impact on the industry and is ?fantastic news for Manitoba growers?. As for Canada?s potato storage holdings on Feb. 1, he says that there isn?t a surplus of potatoes on the fresh side, and ?based on the pricing that we see in most areas, we are matched very well in terms of the fresh sector.? However, he notes that ?there?s a lot less seed then we?ve seen in other years.?
2/26/2018

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Enemies of the skin: Expert shares management guidelines on serious potato blemish diseases

Silver scurf and black dot are potato blemish diseases that are growing in prevalence and economic importance. These diseases are challenging to control and require an integrated effort to reduce their impact on potato production. So says Dr Amanda Gevens, Associate Professor & Extension Specialist in the Plant Pathology Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US. Earlier today, she addressed attendees at the 2018 International Crop Expo in Grand Forks, ND.
2/26/2018

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Fighting fit: US spud industry going on offensive, think ?performance vegetable?

The U.S. potato industry likes to describe its product as ?America?s favorite vegetable.? But the industry acknowledges that critics have put potato marketing efforts ?on the defensive,? causing ?us to say that it?s OK to eat potatoes,? said Blair Richardson, president and CEO of Potatoes USA, the nation?s potato marketing agency. Now, his group is close to approving a marketing push that would put potatoes ?on the offensive,? with ?us saying that you should be eating potatoes,? he said. The push will encourage consumers ? who sometimes use the term ?couch potato? now ? to focus on potatoes? nutritional properties and think of spuds as a ?performance vegetable,? Richardson said.
2/25/2018

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Safe and sound: Arctic seed vault ?key to future global crops?

A special vault has been built in the Arctic to store thousands of seeds as scientists fear the impact of climate change and prolonged conflicts could have devastating consequences on food crops around the world. The Global Seed Vault has been built inside a mountain, near the town of Longyearbyen on the remote Svalbard Islands. It stores thousands of sample seeds from dozens of different countries. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is the largest collection of agricultural biodiversity in the world.
2/25/2018

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Outside the box: Organic potato and veggie chips startup Chipsbox goes entirely green

German organic potato and veggie chip snack producer Chipsbox has swapped out its plastic packaging for a biodegradable option to further cement its sustainable and natural stance. According to founder and MD Erol Kaynak, Chipsbox is the only brand of potato chips in Germany to have made the switch from plastic to biodegradable packaging. Last year, the brand bagged a coveted spot amongst the top three innovations in the ISM New Product Showcase for its novel snack combos that are air-dried, not fried. The added advantage now is the elimination of plastic.
2/25/2018

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Fake scare: Your french fries may not be so deadly after all!

On June 13, 2017, AARP (the American Association of Retired Persons) released an article titled ?Your Fries May Be Deadly,? by Cheryl Bond-Nelms, stating that a recent study links frequent consumption of french fries to a higher mortality risk. The study, which analyzed the dietary habits of 4,400 people, ages 45 to 79, focused on how often participants ate potatoes, fried or not. But, as Joe Kertzman, managing editor of Badger Common?Tater magazine in Wisconsin points out in an article published this month, several sources have taken issue with the article and the original study itself, published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
2/25/2018

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Slippery character: The potato disease that evades consistent control

?Common scab is notoriously difficult to consistently manage with chemical or biological treatments ? varietal resistance needs to be a fundamental strategy in building an integrated management approach for successful control,? dr Amanda Gevens told a gathering of industry people who attended the Potato Session at the International Crop Expo in Grand Forks, North Dakota yesterday. Dr Gevens is Associate Professor & Extension Specialist in the Plant Pathology Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
2/24/2018

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Eyes in the Sky: ARS scientist on the use of UAV?s for potato research

In this video, Shelley Jansky, USDA ARS research geneticist and associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, discusses how she is utilizing unmanned aerial vehicles in her research. She says there are many directions that researchers can go with UAV;s, although they need first of all learn to use them efficiently and effectively. The main use for her right now is with a visible light camera, monitoring crop development in plots during the season to see if there are differences related to several aspects such as nutrient stress, or perhaps water stress and heat stress.
2/24/2018

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US potato exports set record in 2017

Global sales of U.S. potatoes hit a record high in 2017. U.S. potato and potato product exports grew 4.58% in volume and 4.63% in value in 2017 compared to 2016, according to Potatoes USA. Fresh potato exports were up 6% in 2017 while frozen and chip exports up 1%, according to a news release. Exports of all U.S. potatoes and potato products reached a record $1.76 billion for the July 2016-June 2017 marketing year
2/24/2018

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The takeaway from Ireland?s National Potato Conference

The 2018 National Potato Conference, organised by IFA in association with Bord Bia and Teagasc took place in Dublin, the 20th of March. Here are some of the things participants said they learned on the day. The Potato Promotion Campaign, running since 2015, is working ? Irish potato sales are at their highest level in the last 10 years. When potatoes are included in the basket, grocery trips are worth ?27.90 more than the average shop.
2/23/2018

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Courting consumers: Albert Heijn promotes fresh potatoes with new products and packaging

Dutch retailer Albert Heijn has introduced a new in-store layout for its potato section, as well as new products, packaging, and detailed information cards ? all in a bid to promote the sale of fresh potatoes. The retail group says that Dutch consumers eat potatoes three to four times a week on average, and are always looking for new ways to prepare and cook them.
2/23/2018

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Andean potatoes take the world stage, but tough times lie ahead

For the first time in its history, the World Potato Congress will take place in Latin America, the ?birthplace? of the potato. From May 27 to 31 of this year, hundreds of people from around the world will descend on Cusco, Peru, to attend the 10th annual event, organized by the not-for-profit World Potato Congress Inc. It?s timely, really, that the World Potato Congress is meeting in this part of the world at this time.
2/23/2018

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The Canadian grower who produces organic potatoes on a commercial scale

Organic potato production on a commercial scale is a challenge, but one Canadian grower in the province of Ontario is meeting it. Isaiah Swidersky offers a careful answer when asked if organic potato production is a risk worth taking. ?To some degree it is, but there?s a reason I haven?t expanded it to 200 or 300 acres,? Swidersky says. ?It?s a challenge to grow organic potatoes. But I?m optimistic. It?s a good challenge.?
2/22/2018

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Irish Farmers Association: ?Potato growers get less than 20% of the price consumers pay for spuds?

Potato growers are getting less than one-fifth of the price a consumer pays for their product in the shop, a conference in Dublin heard. Speaking at the National Potato Conference in Dublin, IFA President Joe Healy outlined how retailers are taking the lion?s share of the margin on potatoes, while farmers bear all of the risk. The conference organised by the Irish Farmers Association (IFA) in association with Bord Bia and Teagasc, heard that pre-pack potatoes are retailing at up to ?1,400 per tonne while growers receive less than one-fifth of that.
2/22/2018

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Promotional success story: Potatoes are bought once every second in Irish retailers

Speaking at the National Potato Conference 2018 in Dublin, Lorcan Bourke, Fresh Produce and Potato Sector Manager of Bord Bia said that a ?1 million EU-funded promotional campaign, managed by Bord Bia, had significantly helped to promote the sector in recent years. The figures show potato sales are at their highest level in the last 10 years, with ?195m worth of potatoes sold last year, and a 20% increase in potato sales volume since 2013. Research shows potatoes are bought once every second in Irish retailers.
2/22/2018

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Tomato-potato psyllid: Tough times for Western Australian spud growers

West Australian potato growers are still counting the cost of losing market access to the eastern states a year after the tomato-potato psyllid (TPP) outbreak near Perth. Peak bodies are concerned the restrictions were too harsh, as the associated candidatus liberibacter solanacearum (CLso) bacterium, which TPP can be a vector for, has still not been found. Potato Growers Association chief executive Simon Moltoni said it had been a ?devastating? year for farmers
2/22/2018

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Hot arrival: Lamb Weston introduces ?Crispy on Delivery? fries

Lamb Weston introduces a solution for fries that arrive hot and crispy via home delivery ? new Crispy on Delivery is a comprehensive solution that goes from store to door. Crispy on Delivery fries maintain heat and crispiness for thirty minutes, while traditional fries start to lose their appeal after only five minutes. New Crispy on Delivery started with extensive research focused on customer satisfaction for home fry delivery. Lamb Weston identified three key areas that can impact delivered fry quality ? the product, the packaging and best practices for delivery from store to door.
2/21/2018

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?Rooted apical cuttings?: Promising technology with potential to boost quality potato seed production

Seed potato farmers in Kenya?s potato growing regions are adopting promising technology with potential to boost quality seed availability. The farmers are using rooted apical cuttings as starter material for seed production as opposed to certified seed. The cuttings technology has been introduced in Kenya by the International Potato Center (CIP) under a programme funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
2/21/2018

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US: Impact of CIPC use under review by the EPA

As a part of a Registration Review process, the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) in the US is reviewing the data associated with the use of Chlorpropham (CIPC) ? the major sprout inhibitor used in the potato industry. The Task Force representing the companies that manufacture and sell CIPC are actively working with EPA to provide any additional data to support the continued registration of this important compound. The output of the models used by EPA to evaluate any potential impacts of the use of CIPC on applicators, the environment or human health, depends on the accuracy of the assumptions about use patterns.
2/20/2018

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Welsh potato growers unite to tackle wireworm

Over 40 potato growers and agronomists met at AHDB Potatoes? Welsh Potato Day near Haverfordwest on 2 February to exchange technical knowledge aimed at producing the perfect crop. Pembrokeshire is renowned nationally for producing high-quality potatoes using an eco-friendly farming system, where potatoes are usually grown in rotation with grassland. This method has many benefits including maintaining healthy and nutritious soil, but the grassland is attractive to wireworm, a pest that causes damage to potato crops.
2/20/2018

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Irish Farmers Association: ?Potato growers get less than one-fifth of the price consumers pay for spuds?

Potato growers are getting less than one-fifth of the price a consumer pays for their product in the shop, a conference in Dublin today heard. Speaking at the National Potato Conference in Dublin, IFA President Joe Healy outlined how retailers are taking the lion?s share of the margin on potatoes, while farmers bear all of the risk. The conference organised by the Irish Farmers Association (IFA) in association with Bord Bia and Teagasc, heard that pre-pack potatoes are retailing at up to ?1,400 per tonne while growers receive less than one-fifth of that.
2/20/2018

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Potatoes gain credibility for performance of Olympic athletes

Potatoes as a performance food are gaining notoriety during the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, with the newly released Olympian Menu and announcement that performance nutrition is now a critical part of athletes? strategy to win. The PyeongChang 2018 athlete?s village kitchen has 180 chefs serving 7,000 meals a day at its peak, and two senior sports nutritionists appointed to the United States Olympic Committee. Team USA shipped 85 pallets of food and equipment, including potatoes, to ensure athletes had exactly what they needed for fuel at all times.
2/20/2018

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