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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

Farther Farms developed technology to keep precut fries shelf-stable without freezing or refrigeration

Packaged food startup Farther Farms, backed with $10 million in capital from the National Science Foundation, has created a new food preservation process that it hopes could make the cold chain moot for traditionally frozen or refrigerated packaged food products. The company’s first product, a precut, ready-to-fry French fry, which uses a CO2 food pasteurization technology to keep the fry shelf-stable for months without requiring a freezer or refrigerator.
9/27/2021

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Irish govt wants to help potato growers get their produce into chip shops

The Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine in Ireland, Senator Pippa Hackett, has welcomed a new initiative which is aimed at helping Irish potato growers get their produce into Irish chip shops. The Minister said: “Growing chipping potatoes is a specialist operation, and the market for them is valued at approximately €20 million per year. I think the Irish consumer, given the choice, will really appreciate businesses that support local growers.”
9/27/2021

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McCain and The Simple Root use potatoes to create alternatives for dairy based foods

The Simple Root, a new global plant-based brand backed by world leading FMCG McCain Foods, will launch in the UK later this year, harnessing the power of the potato to create delicious alternatives to dairy based foods. Launching in the UK with a global roll out across key markets to follow, the range includes versatile cooking sauces such as bechamel, truffle and cheese, and pesto, cream ‘cheeze,’ and a range of dips such as roasted garlic and herb and smoky chipotle.
9/27/2021

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Key Technology and Exeter Engineering team up to introduce OCULUS digital sorters for potatoes to North America

Key Technology, a member of the Duravant family of operating companies, and Exeter Engineering announce the formation of a sales and service partnership in North America. Under the terms of the agreement, Exeter is appointed the exclusive agent to sell and service Key’s OCULUS digital sorters for fresh market potatoes in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
9/27/2021

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Side Delights steps up to the plate as potato sales rise and consumers choose in-home dining

Side Delights shared industry data showing that retail sales of fresh potatoes alone totaled $3.1 billion for the past year (July 2020-June 2021). “While many shoppers are returning to their busy schedules, many are leaning into the convenience of quick-to-cook products like our Side Delights® Steamables and Bakeables so they can prepare meals easily and cost-effectively in the comfort of their own home,” noted Kathleen Triou, President and CEO of Fresh Solutions Network.
9/27/2021

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Frozen French fry production in China expected to increase by 20 percent

According to a recent report issued by the USDA’s Global Agricultural Information Network (GAIN), China’s MY2021/22 frozen French fries production is forecast higher by 20 percent at 420,000 metric tons (MT). According to industry sources, a new french fry production line will be put into production in MY2021/22 in Inner Mongolia. Frozen French fry producers in China are expected to expand their production as much as possible to make up for the reduction of imports.
9/23/2021

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Monitoring project proves successful for potato tuber moth management in South Africa

Potato tuber moth can be a potato producer’s nightmare. InteliGro in South Africa devised an effective monitoring system not only help to control this pest successfully, but allows producers to manage risks and reduce input costs over time. The project has since gained tremendous momentum and is currently an integral part of the service and decision-making support InteliGro offers in South Africa’s Sandveld potato-production region.
9/23/2021

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XAG demonstrates potential of fully autonomous drones for potato farmers

Flying into the Andes mountains of Ecuador, XAG Agricultural Drones are recently introduced to a series of on-farm spray trials for high-altitude specialty crops. The demonstrations on potato fields have presented the high potential of fully autonomous drones in reducing labour cost and agricultural pesticide exposure. The agile agricultural drone would be a powerful tool to promote sustainable farming in Ecuador’s 3.2 million hectares of cultivable soil.
9/23/2021

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‘Nuru’: An AI-powered phone app for African farmers expanded to include potato diseases

Because potato growers need to identify and manage diseases in their fields, the AI-powered mobile app PlantVillage Nuru has been expanded to include them also. More than two million farmers in East Africa who depend on potatoes will be able to point their smartphones at a plant and receive an instant disease diagnosis through the app. It has been expanded to include potato late blight (Phytophthora infestans) and early blight (Alternaria solani).
9/22/2021

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NDSU seeking postdoctoral research associate to investigate agronomic, environmental factors impacting potatoes

The Department of Plant Sciences at North Dakota State University (NDSU) is seeking a postdoctoral research associate to investigate agronomic and environmental factors impacting potato yield and postharvest quality. This position will take a lead in investigating management of new and/or promising new potato varieties during all aspects of potato production.
9/22/2021

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Pepsico’s largest greenfield snack plant in India to double its snack business by 2022

Pepsico last week commissioned the country’s largest greenfield food plant in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh. The plant is built at a cost of Rs 814 crore (USD110m), with the aim to fulfill the company’s goal of doubling its snack business by 2022. The plant will cater for the demand of the company’s Lays potato chips business, connecting with over 5,000 local potato farmers.
9/22/2021

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Potato demand improves in Ireland, European markets regain confidence

The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) reports that retail and consumer demand have improved in the country this week as colder weather has returned and families are back into routines, following the holiday period. The hospitability sector continues to prosper despite the return of schools. European markets continue to regain confidence as economies are almost fully re-opened at this point.
9/22/2021

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Expert advice on operating equipment for harvest and loading into storage

The bulk of harvest is just ahead of us and here are a few reminders on operating equipment for handling the new crop. Regardless of how experienced at operating equipment, a few friendly reminders can always be helpful to minimize bruise, say potato specialists Nora Olsen and Mike Thornton in this article published by Potato Grower magazine.
9/21/2021

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Frozen potato products: A-Insights reports on latest trends

Market and consumer data analytics company A-INSIGHTS has published its latest monthly MarketMonitor report on trends in the Frozen Potato Products industry, titled “June Insights“. Analysts at the company conclude that global trade volume is up 0.5%YTD compared to 2019. Aside from the U.S., France, and New Zealand, all major exporters saw volumes increase compared to 2019. With a monthly import volume of 107.9 thousand tonnes in June, U.S. imports are up 26.2% compared to 2019.
9/20/2021

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Scientists found dried potato powder to be cheaper energy source in animal feed than maize

Scientists at the University of Agriculture Faisalabad (UAF) in Pakistan have found that dried potato powder can successfully be used as a cheaper energy source in animal feed and can be added up to 30 percent in ruminant concentrates without any negative effect. Due to the high cost of yellow corn, dried potato concentrate had been identified as a low cost alternative and it can easily replace maize.
9/19/2021

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Call for abstract submission for WPC 2022 now open

The 11th World Potato Congress will be held in Dublin, Ireland from 30 May to 2 June, 2022. The call for abstract submission for WPC 2022 is now open and authors are encouraged to submit their abstract online for consideration. A very limited number of submissions will be selected for oral presentation and authors will be notified if their abstract has been accepted for an oral presentation on 20th January 2022.
9/19/2021

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Plans in the making for new representative body for British potato industry

A group of leading potato industry stakeholders has drawn up tentative proposals for a new representative body, provisionally called GB Potatoes. They have distanced themselves from the Growers’ Better Levy Group (GBLG), and say their approach is to bring all sectors together via voluntary subscription and membership. A paper on provisional ideas is currently being circulated to stakeholders.
9/17/2021

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General Manager of United Potato Growers of Canada to retire

Kevin MacIsaac, who has been General Manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada since October 1, 2011 announced he will be retiring this fall. MacIsaac’s diversified career over a 42 year timespan includes dedicated service as an extension agronomist, farmer, industry organizer and a knowledgeable and eloquent advocate. UPGC hopes to have a replacement for the position by this fall and is actively seeking applications for the GM position at this time.
9/17/2021

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MountainKing: Quality of Colorado potato crop ‘extraordinary’

As MountainKing readies for its fall harvest, early tests from its fields in Colorado’s San Luis Valley offer encouraging signs for several of the brand’s gourmet varieties including its yellow-flesh varietals. “The 2021 crop outlook is very bright,” says Andreas Trettin, director of marketing for MountainKing Potatoes. “The quality is extraordinary,” he says.
9/16/2021

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BASF receives registration for Veltyma fungicide with new active ingredient Revysol

BASF Canada Agricultural Solutions has received registration from Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) for Veltyma Fungicide. Veltyma contains the unique active ingredient Revysol that provides broader, stronger, and longer control against various diseases. Veltyma is registered for use on multiple crops including potatoes, corn, wheat and soybeans.
9/16/2021

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Australian researchers study whether ‘plant medicines’ could help treat cancer, obesity

“Plant cures” are the key to world-first research by a team of scientists at the University of Queensland (UQ), led by Professor David Craik. “We’re engineering plants into super-efficient producers of next-generation medicines,” Professor Craik said. “So we want to put molecules into, say, potatoes, so that effectively you can have your french fries and not worry about the consequences.”
9/15/2021

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UK agri-tech company secures funding to research early detection of potato diseases and defects

Research scientist Dr Barbara dos Santos Correia, with support of B-hive Innovations, has been successful in her application for a Future Leaders Fellowship and will receive nearly £675,000 to support her TuberSense project – a four-year research programme that aims to detect diseases and defects in potato crops, using volatile biomarkers and innovative gas sensors to reduce food waste across the supply chain.
9/15/2021

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Heat leaves Canada’s prairie potato growers on edge

Producers across Western Canada are optimistic they can still produce a good crop this fall if the weather co-operates, reports Alex McCuaig for The Western Producer. It’s been a reversal of fortunes for Canada’s potato growers this year as last year’s dry season in the East moves west. Not all Manitoba growers have escaped the heat that has plagued producers across the West, especially those farming on dryland.
9/13/2021

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Recyclable and compostable packaging for bite-size potato category

Tasteful Selections recently announced the limited launch of its new 100-percent plastic-free, recyclable and compostable packaging in the US. “This new paper packaging with PaperLock™ technology is a major step forward in sustainable packaging. It offers light protection and natural absorption characteristics that protect our potatoes and help keep plastic out of the waste stream,” said Tim Huffcutt, vice-president, sales and marketing operations.
9/13/2021

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Experts expect high quality Maine potato crop

Agricultural specialists and growers in Maine are predicting a higher quantity and quality of potato crop than was produced in 2020, due to the less severe weather this summer. As Melissa Lizotte reports for Bangor Daily News, last year, severe drought conditions throughout Aroostook County resulted in yields of 20 percent less than the 2019 crop. But despite days of record heat this summer, the overall weather pattern has been much more ideal for the growing season.
9/13/2021

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HZPC pleased with the acquisition of SolEye product by RMA-Techniek

RMA-Techniek acquired the product SolEye on 1 September. SolEye is a product by Solentum B.V. (a former subsidiary of HZPC Holdings). Herman Verveld, Commercial Director at HZPC said: “Here at HZPC we are pleased with this agreement. We could not have found a better company to take over than RMA-Techniek. The company is familiar with the potato business and well known to existing and potential new customers worldwide. Moreover, the use and development of the SolEye will be further expanded”.
9/12/2021

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Greentronics announces new features for well-known tracking product

Greentronics is a company based in Ontario, Canada that designs and manufactures electronic control products for use in agriculture. The company recently added several new features to its well-known RiteWeight in-line conveyor scale product. According to Greentronics founder and owner, Bill Menkveld, the product provides potato growers with an easy and accurate method for tracking loads and weights by date, field, variety, temperature, and cellar.
9/12/2021

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Specialists advise potato growers on crop cleaning prior to storage

Prepping your potatoes for storage depends on smart harvesting and effective cleaning. Engineers at Lockwood Manufacturing in the US say everyone knows digging too warm, too cold and too wet are all bad news for long-term storage, as is allowing your tubers to drop and bruise during harvest. However, they point out that putting your potatoes into storage in less than clean condition is just as costly in the long run. New cleaning options exist.
9/12/2021

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Canadian crop update: Record amounts of rainfall in the east, growers hope early frosts hold off

Weather patterns have continued to influence the outlook for the Canadian potato crop the past couple of weeks, says Kevin MacIsaac in the latest report issued by the United Potato Growers of Canada (UPGC). He says Eastern Canada (particularly Prince Edward Island) has received record amounts of rainfall from the remnants of Hurricane Ida. The province of Manitoba has also received some rainfall over the past two weeks. High temperatures have broken in Alberta, but it still remains dry. MacIsaac summarizes how the crop looks at this time.
9/11/2021

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For the San Luis Valley’s potato farmers, a spud trade dispute is ‘nothing new’

Colorado’s San Luis Valley produces more fresh potatoes than anywhere in the country outside of Idaho, and farmers there are welcoming a ruling by the Supreme Court of Mexico that clears the way for American potatoes to be sold in that country. But, as Nell London reports for Colorado Potato Radio, they’re also skeptical because the court decision is just the latest round in a trade dispute that has dragged on for nearly two decades.
9/11/2021

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Industry sets expectations for Idaho, U.S. potato crops

The transition from old crop to new crop potatoes is taking place right now, and two potato industry observers report that expected reduced fresh shipments during the 2021-22 marketing year should provide a firm market. Mark Klompien, president and CEO of the United Potato Growers of America For the 2020-21 season, Klompien said that fresh potato pricing seems to be finding stable footing this fall.
9/10/2021

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British potato growers cautioned against using ware imports as seed potatoes

The British Potato Trade Association (BPTA) has written to its membership to warn against the potential use of imported ware potatoes as seed. Charlie Reeve writes in a news story for Farmers Weekly that complications following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU culminated in there being no access to imported seed potato supplies from the EU since 1 July this year, save for exceptions on a case-by-case basis.
9/10/2021

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Report: Trade in global frozen potato products down, recovery driven by imports from the Americas

Market and consumer data analytics company A-INSIGHTS last week published its latest monthly newsletter on trends in the Frozen Potato Products industry, titled “May Insights”. Sector analysts at the company say global trade volume down 3.3%YTD compared to 2019, with prices down 3.5%YTD.
9/10/2021

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Scotts’ Evolution Separator: Series of detailed how-to tutorials published as videos online

Scotts Precision Manufacturing Ltd based near Boston, Lincolnshire in the UK has taken a bold and innovative step by producing a series of tutorial videos to assist operators, owners, sales and service technicians of its Evolution Separator. The 9 separate videos on the Scotts YouTube channel explain everything you will ever need to know about this market leading cleaning system. All things including how to set the machine up for all crop types are covered in minute detail.
9/7/2021

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Colorado beetle catcher deals with ‘lazy potato pest’

Potato growers and agricultural machine builders in Biddinghuizen in the Netherlands have come up with a way to deal with colorado potato beetles without using pesticides. Infestations by colorado beetles, a North American import, have been increasing in Europe because of rising temperatures. To remove the colorado beetle and its ravenous larvae, all the farmer has to do is to attach a custom built machine with rotating plastic flaps to a tractor and swat them off the plants.
9/7/2021

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European potato crop impacted by extreme humidity, late blight spray costs at historical level

North Western Europe will have had one of its most humid summers in the last decades – in some areas in Belgium and Western Germany, rainfall at mid-July was an absolute historic high. The North Western European Potato Growers (NEPG) reports that since mid-July late blight problems have been a constant worry for growers, and spray costs will also be on a historic level.
9/7/2021

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Idaho drought: Potato digs show ‘bad signs’

Heat and dryness have been the story of the summer this year in southern Idaho. With record heat, crops — including Idaho’s most famous crop — have seen effects in numerous ways, reports Nicholas Snider for KMVT. “I’m not saying that Idaho won’t have any of the bigger potatoes they’re famous for,” says Sean Ellis, a spokesman for the Idaho Farm Bureau Federation. “There’s just not going to be as many this year.”
9/6/2021

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Weather woes hit British potato crop

Potato growers in the UK are starting to lift a crop that has weathered difficult conditions and is being sold into an uncertain market, writes Cedric Porter in an article for Farmers Guardian. Porter says most potatoes were planted in very good conditions as the wet winter gave way to a drier spring just in time. But it was one of the coldest April’s on record, followed by a very wet May and then a mixed summer with some heat but plenty of rain.
9/6/2021

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Alternative potato crop desiccation technology awarded

crop.zone, the new hybrid electric solution for alternative crop desiccation and weed management, has been voted the most innovative new technology in potato production by potato professionals worldwide. In addition to the Audience Award, NUCROP won the silver medal at the Potato Europe Innovation Awards out of 30 entries. Both prizes were presented on 1 September 2021 in Lelystad, the Netherlands.
9/5/2021

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Reekie Ltd take on Bauer irrigation equipment sales, service and parts support

Reekie Ltd, a leading supplier of agricultural, construction and groundcare machinery, is all set to rejuvenate sales, service and parts back-up as a newly-appointed official dealer for Bauer’s premium range of crop irrigation equipment. The main focus of the new partnership is on the group’s depots at Perth and Cupar, which cover some of the largest potato and vegetable growing areas in Scotland.
9/5/2021

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New managing director for Haith and Nigel Haith becomes chairman

The UK’s leading designer and manufacturer of vegetable handling solutions has announced that it has appointed a new Managing Director. Duane Hill takes over the role as Haith’s Managing Director as Nigel Haith moves to the position of Chairman as he prepares for semi-retirement. Mr Haith has been Managing Director since 1997 and has overseen the company’s growth from a turnover of £6 million to well over £20 million.
9/4/2021

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EPA: Three popular insecticides may harm endangered species

Recently released EPA draft Biological Evaluations find three widely used insecticides are “likely to adversely affect” (LAA) plants and animals that are considered endangered. Each of the three insecticides are a neonicotinoid used on a variety of crops, turf, and ornamentals, among other residential and commercial indoor and outdoor uses. Imidacloprid is commonly applied as a seed treatment and is a widely used insecticide in North America. The EPA estimates imidacloprid is applied to 65% of Michigan’s potato acres.
9/4/2021

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New Zealand research aims to turn bio-waste such as potato scraps into economic boost

University of Canterbury environmental science professor Brett Robinson in New Zealand is working on a research project that transforms biowaste into high-value products. Waste products from New Zealand’s food processing industry – such as potato scraps and grape skins – could be transformed into high-value soil conditioners and animal feed, according to new research.
9/4/2021

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Study: Dietary shift to potatoes could cut staple crop emissions in China by 25%

A dietary shift from rice to potatoes could ‘notably reduce’ the climate and environmental impacts of staple crop agriculture in China, according to a new study. It finds that a large-scale dietary shift towards potatoes, combined with better growing methods, could reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of these staples by up to 25 per cent. However, the authors note that it remains to be seen whether such a major dietary shift can be carried out on a large scale.
8/29/2021

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Heat, drought stress Red River Valley potato crop, resulting in quality, yield reduction

The toll that hot dry weather took on the Red River Valley 2021 potato crop won’t be visible until harvest begins in a few weeks, but it’s already clear it has affected yields and quality. “We have a lot of physiological disorders,” said Gary Secor, North Dakota State University plant pathologist. Secor was one of several NDSU and University of Minnesota researchers who spoke on Thursday, Aug. 26, at the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association field day near Larimore.
8/29/2021

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2021 San Luis Valley Potato Festival is back

The 2021 Potato Festival will be Saturday, September 11 at Chapman Park in Monte Vista. There is another exciting opportunity available at the Potato Festival to those who want an in-depth look at the potato industry. Hosted by the Executive Director of Colorado Potatoes, Jim Ehrlich, this tour will visit the San Luis Valley Research Center and a local grower’s field. Passengers will get to talk directly with growers and researchers
8/29/2021

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Tong’s new MonstaFill transforms box filling worldwide

Since its launch in 2019, the MonstaFill box filler from Tong Engineering has proved invaluable in transforming post-harvest box filling for growers worldwide, from the UK and Ireland, to Australia and the USA. And now several new models of the MonstaFill twin-head box filler are in production at Tong’s new purpose-built manufacturing facility, demonstrating its role in bringing real benefits to growers both in reducing labour requirements and increasing throughput.
8/28/2021

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New North American Heat and Control facility under construction

Heat and Control, Inc., world renowned equipment manufacturer and food/non-food processing industry supplier, is constructing a new facility in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The new site will expand support for the North American manufacturing industry and will meet the increased needs of pre-sale and after-market needs, including product/equipment testing, demonstrations, service support, and training.
8/28/2021

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Potato storages, processing facilities can benefit from unique insulation coating material

Advanced Coating Solutions, headquartered in Kirkland, WA in the US produces a thin insulation coating material that works by blocking heat transfer. Instead of using mass to work as a heat sink and absorb heat (fiberglass), the thin insulation coating works like the ‘Low E’ window concept, where thin oxide coatings diffuse infrared radiation.
8/28/2021

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Biochemistry offers path to help reduce losses during potato handling and storage

Massive losses in the United States’ number one vegetable crop, potatoes, aren’t only due to pests or drought, they’re due to damage in the handling and storage of potatoes over the months of storage on their way to the supermarket as fresh potatoes or as potato chips or fries. A biochemistry approach that seeks to identify genetic characteristics of the wound healing process in potatoes has had success in a project led by Dylan Kosma, a biochemist in the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology & Natural Resources at the University of Nevada, Reno.
8/26/2021

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