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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

Researchers aim to improve accuracy of potato cyst nematode calculator

A team of Harper Adams University researchers, Dr Matthew Back, Dr Ivan Grove and Bill Watts, are working in collaboration with Leeds University and Barworth Agriculture to improve the accuracy of the ?AHDB Potatoes potato cyst nematode (PCN) pallida calculator? which is currently used as an educational forecasting tool for UK potato growers. To help growers to formulate control strategies, the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) Potatoes created the ?PCN Calculator? for the most troublesome species, Globodera pallida. The calculator enables PCN population dynamics and potato yields to be forecast for different potato varieties grown under a range of conditions and control strategies.
2/5/2018

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Potatoes: The key to providing food for potential Martian colonists in the future?

Few can call themselves more of a potato enthusiast than the Weather Channel?s science editor, James Crugnale. He, like a growing number of spud science aficionados, believe the potato is the key to providing food for potential Martian colonists in the future. ?Potatoes are one of nature?s most fantastic vegetables,? Crugnale told Inverse at the Inverse Lunar Eclipse Party and Science Fair at Caveat in New York City, where he explained just how hardcore taters can be. ?They can be grown under very harsh circumstances. They?re one of our most versatile vegetables,? he said.
2/5/2018

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Facebook reach increases 630 percent for Colorado Potatoes

A huge bump in Facebook likes for Colorado Potatoes during the 2017 calendar year has reinforced CP?s commitment to the social media giant for reaching current consumers and engaging new ones as well. According to Marketing Administrative Assistant Savannah Schlaufman of Colorado Potatoes, which is the marketing arm of the Colorado Potato Administrative Committee, consumer reach through Facebook has been exponential, and Pinterest is growing as well.
2/5/2018

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Presentation: ?The weird and wild world of physiological disorders?

This presentation by Dr Andy Robinson at North Dakota State University (NDSU) shows many physiological disorders of potatoes. These disorders can cause minor or major losses in tuber quality. They can be difficult to identify and replicate. This presentation was given at the recent 2018 Manitoba Potato Production Days meeting in Brandon, Canada. Dr Robinson is Extension Agronomist and Assistant Professor at NDSU.
2/2/2018

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Colorado potato beetle genome gives insight into major agricultural pest

The Colorado potato beetle is notorious for its role in starting the pesticide industry ? and for its ability to resist the insecticides developed to stop it. Managing the beetle costs tens of millions of dollars every year, but this is a welcome alternative to the billions of dollars in damage it could cause if left unchecked. To better understand this tenacious pest, a team of scientists from 33 institutes and universities, led by University of Wisconsin-Madison entomologist Sean Schoville, sequenced the beetle?s genome, probing its genes for clues to its surprising adaptability to new environments and insecticides.
2/1/2018

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Award winning soil moisture meter said to be a ?must-have? for potato growers

Spectrum Technologies, Inc., based in Illinois in the US, brings soil measurement technology to potato farmers with the FieldScout TDR350. The TDR350 is a highly relevant tool every potato farmer can find useful and affordable in working toward optimal soil management. ?The TDR350 provides farmers with an objective and consistent way to measure soil moisture, and to determine the best strategy for irrigation tillage, fertilizer application and planting operations,? says Mike Thurow, President & CEO of Spectrum Technologies.
2/1/2018

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Experts provide practical guidelines for fertilizer management in irrigated potato production

A comprehensive nutrient management program is no doubt essential for maintaining a healthy potato crop, optimizing tuber yield and quality, and minimizing undesirable impacts on the environment ? in particular during irrigated crop production. High nutrient demand coupled with relative low native fertility often found in irrigated potato soils, can result in high fertilizer requirements for irrigated potato production. In an in-depth report on this topic, specialists Carl J. Rosen and Peter M. Bierman at the University of Minnesota provide several research based guidelines that will be of interest to growers and agronomists alike.
2/1/2018

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US: Processing expansion impacts demand for Washington and Oregon spuds

Expansion in the processing industry will create new dynamics for Washington and Oregon potato production, the leader of Washington?s potato commission says. ?We have incredible growing demand in Asia; we still have growing demand here domestically, and we?ve got to keep up with that,? said Chris Voigt, executive director of the Washington State Potato Commission. ?We?ve had international customers on quotas for several years now; we just have not been able to get them enough frozen potato products overseas.?
1/31/2018

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NFU Potato Forum wants to improve relations in British fresh produce sector

The NFU Potato Forum last month published a report, entitled Bridging the Gap, which looked at how relations can be improved in what is a vital area of the British fresh produce sector. Informed by member feedback, the Potato Forum wrote to over 30 packers and processors to highlight concerns over collaboration and communication, following this up with face-to-face meetings.
1/31/2018

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Canada: Upcoming pest management workshops for potato growers in Alberta province

To grow any crop successfully, you need to have a handle of what pests may be threatening that crop and how to identify them, whether it?s insects, diseases, or weeds. And potatoes are no exception. Rob Spencer, commercial horticulture specialist with Alberta Agriculture, says an upcoming workshop will help producers do just that. Watch an interview with Rob Spencer on YouTube (2:11 mins).
1/31/2018

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Company on cutting edge of protecting stored potatoes with ?humigator? technology

In 1985, Garry Isaacs invented a piece of equipment he called a humigator. He patented it and started a company in Blackfoot six years ago called Idaho Hydro Tech (IHT) to manufacture it. The name is a combination of fumigator and humidifier, which describes the two functions of the invention.
1/30/2018

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US: Webinar ? Crop Nutrition for Quality Potato Production

Join Agronomist Steve Petrie and Jimmy Ridgway, Crop Manager-Potatoes Yara North America, for this free webinar as they share insights from extensive crop nutrition research and trials that Spudman magazine partner YARA has conducted. They?ll discuss technology, tools and services to help you grow your best crop yet. Jimmy Ridgway has worked in the crop nutrition business in retail, wholesale and manufacturer representation since 1984. Dr. Petrie has been Director of Agronomic Services for Yara in the western US since 2013.
1/30/2018

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North American potato experts share ideas on the importance of healthy seed

Spud Smart magazine gathered 5 expert opinions on why it?s important potato growers plant the best seed they can get their hands on. ?Seed is the cornerstone of potato production,? notes Steven Johnson, crops specialist and extension professor at the University of Maine. ?The same production costs are put into a crop from poor seed as in a crop from good seed, but the yields can be drastically different.?
1/30/2018

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Idaho potato company wants to bring more organic potatoes to market

Everything Potatoes, Inc. is the brain child of Sandy Bragg, president, and husband Jeff Bragg, vice president, whose mission is to offer a healthier potato option as far and wide as possible while still being involved in every stage of development. The organic potato market has been a growing niche market the last few years as people gravitate towards organics for better health and flavor. Everything Potatoes, Inc. offers a colorful mix of seed potato and fresh potato varieties.
1/30/2018

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Cargill and AKV Langholt plan $22.5m potato starch facility in Denmark

Cargill and its Danish potato starch partner AKV Langholt will invest $22.5 million in a new potato starch production unit at their Langholt facility in Denmark. The potato starches produced at the new facility expand Cargill?s SimPure portfolio of functional native starches. Cargill said that its SimPure starches feature ingredients from a variety of botanical sources.
1/29/2018

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US: Potato prices strengthening

Tight supplies are pushing potato prices higher, but those better prices probably won?t last long. ?I think we are coming into a crunch time for potatoes,? said Bruce Huffaker with North American Potato Market News. That?s good news for potato growers who have seen relatively flat prices at near cost of production levels for the last five years.
1/29/2018

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Ireland: Farmer brothers extend massive deal with Tesco

Country Crest, the north Dublin-based family-owned agri-business, and Tesco Ireland have confirmed a further extension of its almost 20 year relationship until 2020. Owned by Gabriel and Michael Hoey, Country Crest will continue to supply all potatoes, onions and sweet potatoes to Tesco Ireland?s 149 stores and via online shopping in a deal worth over ?60m.
1/29/2018

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US: Zebra chip control costs potato growers nearly $11 million each year

According to a news report by Capital Press, zebra chip disease control costs farmers in major potato-growing areas in the US ? in particular the Northwest ? nearly $11 million each year, said Gina Greenway, business and accounting assistant professor at the College of Idaho. Greenway is also working to quantify zebra chip?s effects on potato quality and developing a cost-benefit analysis of different insecticide spray regimes.
1/28/2018

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British potato farmer aims to lead vodka revolution

Vodka is the latest example of farmers driven to drink as they seek to make more from their resources in the ground. Gin, beer and wine are already part of Yorkshire agriculture?s burgeoning business romance with alcohol and its latest entrant David Rawlings of Priory Farm, Syningthwaite in North Yorkshire has already distilled success before a bottle has gone on sale. Priory Vodka made from a small acreage of David?s potato crop that is otherwise destined for McCain?s and McDonald?s fries won two prestigious Gold awards at the Global Spirits Masters in autumn 201
1/28/2018

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10th World Potato Congress a tribute to Peru, the origin of modern-day potatoes

Potatoes were first taken out of Peru, their Andean region of origin, 458 years ago and introduced to the rest of the world, and then went on to feed the world, according to a news report by the Inter Press Service (IPS) news agency. Half a millennium later, potatoes have spread throughout the planet but there are challenges to preserve the crop?s biodiversity as a source of food security, as well as the rights of the peasants who sustain this legacy for humanity in Peru.
1/28/2018

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Scientists create potato starch paint as petroleum-free alternative

Researchers in Germany have derived film formers for paint using potato starch. Although there has been numerous attempts to use ?organic? components as a base for paint, none have proved to be at par with industry standards. This step from the science community at Fraunhofer has allowed us to have an insight towards creating true ?natural? coating products that leaves no bad effects to the environment.
1/26/2018

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Duravant to acquire sorting and conveying company Key Technology

Material handling and processing specialist Duravant announced today that it has agreed to acquire Key Technology. Key Technology?s potato processing equipment includes optical inspection systems, laser sorters, sizing, grading, and packaging conveyors, and unique Automatic Defect Removal (ADR) systems.
1/26/2018

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Project to improve forecasting of UK?s most damaging potato disease

A team of researchers aim to improve the accuracy of a calculator which is used as a forecasting tool for growers to predict potato cyst nematode (PCN). To help growers to formulate control strategies, AHDB Potatoes created the ?PCN Calculator? for the most troublesome species, Globodera pallida. The calculator enables PCN population dynamics and potato yields to be forecast for different potato varieties grown under a range of conditions and control strategies.
1/25/2018

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South African potato grower reaching out for help with serious disease problems

Monique Vlok is a potato grower in the so called Sandveld region in the southwestern part of South Africa, not far from Cape Town. In her area, many potato growers are dealing with an increasing incidence of potato leaf roll virus and powdery scab. ?These diseases became more prevalent in our region over the past decade or so, and are nowadays of serious concern for many potato growers in South Africa, leading to serious crop losses and of course economic headaches in many cases,? she says.
1/25/2018

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UK: Seed potato suppliers to retail market see 10-15% sales increase

Taylor?s Bulbs says seed potato sales are 10-15% up following the decision by Westland/Unwins and Thompson & Morgan to pull out of the 2018 garden centre seed potato supply market. Taylor?s director Adam Taylor says seed potato sales have started already. JBA Seed Potatoes completed the outright purchase of the Westlands/Unwins seed potato business as of 8 August 2017.
1/24/2018

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US: First San Luis Valley Potato Business Summit focused on economics, future strategies and technology

In the first San Luis Valley Potato Business Summit on Monday in Monte Vista, topics focused more on economics, future strategies and technology than varieties, diseases and rotations. Speakers in what organizers hope to be an annual event talked about markets, the economy, digital agriculture and setting goals for the future. Sterling Liddell with Rabobank, the largest global agricultural lender, discussed economic cycles in relationship to the potato industry.
1/24/2018

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US: Industry cooperation key to progress, potato growers told

The potato industry has had better luck recently in securing federal research dollars due to improved cooperation among its national and state organizations, three industry leaders said Jan. 17 during the Eastern Idaho Potato Conference. The speakers included National Potato Council Executive Vice President and CEO John Keeling; Pat Kole, the Idaho Potato Commission?s vice president of legal and government affairs; and Ryan Krabill, director of research with Potatoes USA.
1/24/2018

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Potatoes USA now largest commodity backer of national school salad bar campaign

This week, Potatoes USA announced the latest part of the Let?s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign, which donates salad bars to school districts in need. The campaign, launched via the United Fresh Start Foundation, has found a major backer in Potatoes USA, which has become the biggest individual commodity donor to the program, donating more than 280 salad bars so far.
1/23/2018

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Tong Engineering appoints new dealer for Scotland

Potato and vegetable handling equipment manufacturer Tong Engineering announced that it has appointed ScanStone potato systems as the company?s new approved dealer for Scotland. Tong Engineering has confirmed its partnership with ScanStone in order to strengthen its relationship with potato and vegetable growers throughout Scotland.
1/23/2018

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Scientists say eating potatoes could help combat dementia

The latest research suggests potatoes can play a significant role in helping combat everything from heart attacks to cancer and strokes and now it seems they could even stave off dementia. Agricultural research scientists from Scotland?s James Hutton Institute (JHI) believe it?s time to put spuds back on the menu as a healthy and nutritious part of a balanced diet.
1/22/2018

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New potato equipment innovations showcased at Agritechnica event

The Agritechnica event in Hanover, Germany is the world?s largest trade fair for agricultural machinery. The German Agricultural Society (DLG) awarded GRIMME (sister company of Spudnik in North America), with a Silver Innovation Award for its new self-propelled four-row potato harvester. Ventor 4150 is the company?s first four-row, self-propelled harvester based on the side elevator concept, said product manager Dirk-Jan Stapel. Another harvester launched at Agritechnica was AVR?s Spirit 5200, a machine designed with simplicity in mind.
1/22/2018

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China sending potatoes, weeds along with humans to the moon

China is planning to send not only astronauts. but also the eggs of silkworms, a tiny weed named Arabidopsis (rockcress), and potato plants to the moon by the end of the year. ?The eggs will hatch into silkworms, which can produce carbon dioxide, while the potatoes and seeds emit oxygen through photosynthesis. Together, they can establish a simple ecosystem on the Moon,? the chief designer of the container, Zhang Yuanxun, told the China Daily.
1/21/2018

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Herbicide injury in potato an important focus of university extension program

The Potato Extension program at the North Dakota State University (NDSU) / University of Minnesota (U of M) is working on herbicide injury in potato and developing educational tools to disseminate scientific findings to growers.
1/21/2018

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US: Spudnik celebrates 60 years

Sixty years after launching, Spudnik is doing well in the potato race. The company, which traces its origins back to two brothers who invented a potato ?scooper? to do the backbreaking, potato-piling labor farmworkers had to do by hand before, employs about 300 people today and makes more than 70 equipment models. ?We are equipment manufacturers. We try to be seen as partners, though,? said marketing specialist Jan Muhle.
1/18/2018

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Not much movement on Belgian potato market, says owner of potato pool

Last year, potato wholesaler RTL Patat from Menen, Belgium, started the first Belgian potato pool. In the Netherlands, this has existed for a while. Owner Rik Tanghe talks about how things are now. ?Multiple growers have signed up with us now. Our goal is to have higher average daily prices. That?s very tricky this year, due to the low daily prices and difficult market circumstances.
1/17/2018

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Brexit: Jersey Royal potatoes ?could be left rotting in fields? due to lack of EU workers

The largest producer of Jersey Royal potatoes has warned crops may be left to rot in the fields because foreign workers have left ahead of Brexit. Polish workers ? who had previously provided the majority of seasonal labour ? have abandoned Jersey following the EU referendum, according to Charlie Gallichan of Woodside Farms, which grows and exports Jersey Royals, vegetables and flowers. Growers are ?trying to keep their heads above water until they get reinforcements? from Africa and elsewhere, he said.
1/17/2018

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2018 Potato Expo Panelists: ?Potato expectations critical in buy-sell relationship?

Communicating quality expectations clearly is the best way to avoid conflicts in buyer-seller relationships, according to panelists at the 2018 Potato Expo. In a fresh market track workshop called ?Identifying the Source of Quality Issues in the Fresh Potato Supply Chain,? retailers and shippers on Jan. 11 talked about how they sort out quality expectations. The session was moderated by Mac Johnson, president and CEO of Category Partners.
1/17/2018

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UK: Potato growers ?must look in dusty corners? to innovate

Researchers are continuing to make strides in helping UK potato growers to get the best crop with the least environmental impact as a nationally-significant Suffolk farm project reached the end of its second year, farmers were told this week. Elveden Estate farm manager Andrew Francis said forward-thinking growers had already made innovations and were now looking for gains in less obvious areas to boost yields while working more sustainably as researchers revealed latest findings from the project.
1/16/2018

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Peru does not have a potato processing plant, despite increasing demand

Last Tuesday, farmers and producers of white potatoes raised their voices and went on strike because of the fall in tuber prices. According to farmers, prices started to fall because of the import of pre-fried potatoes from countries like the Netherlands and the US. The pre-fried potatoes are white potatoes that are ready to be fried and be used in meals.
1/16/2018

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US: ?Potato Woman for All Seasons? awarded

New York state?s Melanie Wickham has been awarded the 2017 Potato Woman for All Seasons by The Packer and Farm Journal publications. The Packer?s Tom Karst presented the award to Wickham on Jan. 12 at the National Potato Council annual awards banquet. Wickham, executive secretary of the Empire State Potato Growers and manager of Empire State Farm Days, was nominated by several state and national industry leaders for the award. Serving for 33 years with Empire State Potato Growers, Wickham was praised for her tireless work on behalf of the industry both in New York and nationwide.
1/16/2018

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European Potato Trade Association welcomes new Communication & Policy Advisor

The European Potato Trade Association (Europatat) is pleased to announce the appointment of Berta Redondo Benito as the new Communication & Policy Advisor of the association, with effect as of 8th of January. Mrs Berta Redondo (27) is an enthusiastic and creative communication professional specialised in European agricultural policies. She holds a Journalism Degree from the University of Valladolid in Spain, where she is originally from, and she has a strong work experience in radio and European communications related with agricultural topics.
1/15/2018

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The importance of potassium management in potato production

Potatoes use more potassium than any other nutrient, including nitrogen. Potassium is required for nutrient movement in the potato plant. It is essential for the makeup of over 40 different enzymes and is involved in more than 60 different enzyme systems in plants. Potassium is crucial in quality potato formation. Plants lacking in potassium often display various signs of deficiencies, the most common being discoloration of older leaves on the plant as compared to younger leaves on the plant.
1/15/2018

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Expert report: Potatoes optimal for improving performance among endurance athletes

A report about high-quality carbohydrates and physical performance was recently released in the peer-reviewed journal Nutrition Today. The report focuses on commentary that took place during an expert panel. The results of the report suggest that balanced diets high in natural, carbohydrate-rich foods, including nutrient-dense potatoes, may be optimal for improving performance among elite endurance athletes.
1/14/2018

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Nematology expert discusses management practices for corky ringspot in potatoes

In a video aimed at helping potato growers, the Plant Management Network has released a presentation by Michigan State University professor of nematology George W. Bird on management practices for corky ringspot. The disease is caused by the tobacco rattle virus and vectored by stubby-root nematodes. The primary symptoms are characteristic concentric rings on tuber skin and internal tissues. Bird?s presentation is designed to assist growers in understanding and managing corky ring spot.
1/14/2018

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?Supermarket Guru? told Potato Expo attendees to keep up with consumer trends

Keeping up with consumer trends and the breakneck pace of technology may not be easy but it is necessary to thrive, Phil Lempert told 2018 Potato Expo attendees. Lempert, known as the Supermarket Guru, covered his list of top 10 food industry trends of 2018 in Jan. 10 fast-moving talk on the Potato Expo?s first day. ?Consumers needs have changed and evolved and the retail landscape is changing dramatically,? Lempert said.
1/13/2018

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Japan now has french fry ice cream sundaes?

Japanese fast food chain First Kitchen has a bit of an image problem, in that it really doesn?t have much of an image. First Kitchen is often so low-key that it?s easy to overlook the chain, but we?re sure that its newest item, french fry sundaes, will help keep it in people?s minds.
1/13/2018

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Research finding: When pests graze certain potatoes, yields double

When some Colombian potato varieties are lightly grazed by a pest, the plants respond by growing larger tubers, at times doubling their yields. Although many types of plants can repair pest damage while maintaining productivity, it?s rare to find species that actually overcompensate and increase productivity. Cornell University and the Universidad Nacional de Colombia researchers first discovered this effect in a commercial Colombian potato in 2010. Now, a new study by the research group published Dec. 27, 2017, in the journal Ecology investigates whether certain conditions might allow farmers to exploit this response to reduce insecticides and increase productivity.
1/13/2018

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Smart B2B networking platform launched for the potato industry in the Netherlands

BizVibe, a smart B2B networking platform for global B2B buyers and suppliers, announced today the next generation of its B2B networking platform for the potato market in the Netherlands. With the update, BizVibe says in a press release that businesses can establish a faster and more efficient path from company discovery to getting better quotes and building long-lasting profitable business partnerships with leading Dutch potato suppliers.
1/12/2018

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Governor?s proposed budget excludes funding for new Idaho seed potato facility

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter?s proposed fiscal year 2019 budget does not include the $3 million in state funds for a new nuclear seed potato facility sought by the University of Idaho?s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. CALS officials had requested $3 million in state funding to help build a new $5.5 million nuclear seed potato facility, which maintains disease-free germplasm and mini-tubers for seed potato growers and researchers. The rest of the money would come from industry partners.
1/12/2018

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UK: Burts Potato Chips snaps up popcorn maker

UK-based Burts Potato Chips is making strides towards its goal of being a leader in snacking with the acquisition of popcorn business Savoury & Sweet Ltd. This is the first acquisition for Burts which is diversifying and expanding its healthy snacking product range to now include popcorn. ?The Burts business has grown significantly over the last five years, from 11.4m (US$15.4 million) in 2013 to an anticipated 37m (US$50 million) post-acquisition for 2017,? says David Nairn, managing director of Burts, who will lead the newly formed business.
1/12/2018

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