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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

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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Idaho potato growers brace for ‘inferior crop’

Randy Hardy, of Oakley, is not alone among Idaho farmers in his assessment that the potato crop he’ll soon harvest will be the worst of his career. Spud farmers conducting test digs or early harvest are uprooting plants supporting no tubers. Where there are spuds, there are fewer than normal, and most of the tubers are undersized and misshapen.
8/26/2021

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Expert opinion on innovations in the potato processing industry

“The potato processing market has been steadily increasing in the last years and this trend is expected to continue. Following this growth, many companies working in this field have presented different innovations in the recent years: new storage options, new pretreatments, new fryers, and new cutting systems.” So says Emerson Jiménez Barajas, Application Director, FAM & Stumabo International.
8/26/2021

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New weapons for tracking late blight

A North Carolina State University team has developed quick diagnostic tests to detect plant diseases before they show symptoms in the field. In particular, they have worked on technology for identifying Phytophthora infestans, which causes late blight in tomatoes and potatoes. This article highlights how that technology works and describes the benefits for producers.
8/25/2021

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Africa Potato Association to hold 12th Triennial Conference in Malawi

The Africa Potato Association (APA) has announced that its 12th triennial conference will take place from June 27 to July 1, 2022 in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe. The conference theme will be ‘Harnessing potato and sweet potato innovations for resilient and healthier agri-food systems’. Conference subthemes include breeding and genetic innovations for increased resilience, production and nutrition, innovative approaches for building sustainable seed systems and more.
8/25/2021

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Spud advice: Managing nutrition during tuber bulking crucial

With tuber bulking being such a critical, yet energy sapping period in potato crop development, now is the time to consider nutrition applications to support crop health and maintain tuber growth. If crops are lacking potassium and sulphur at cell expansion during tuber bulking this can lead to various issues, pointed out FMC crop nutrition technical manager, Chris Bond.
8/25/2021

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Harvesting best practices: Equipment specialist provides practical tips

There’s nothing worse than seeing the crop you’ve invested all season growing get bruised, nicked or otherwise compromised during harvest. Albert Hewitt, Equipment Sales Specialist at LOCKWOOD Manufacturing provides his top tips to ensure growers’ crops comes through harvest in the best possible condition.
8/24/2021

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AVR introduces the ‘Spirit 7200’, a new two-row harvester with unique features

The newly introduced ‘Spirit 7200’ from AVR complements the company’s Spirit family as a drawn, two-row offset potato harvester. In essence, it is a further development of the Spirit 6200. The Spirit 7200 is a response to the increasingly prohibited chemical destruction of haulms. The new harvester integrates an additional haulm separation system in the form of a haulm roller just upstream of the in-line pintle belt.
8/24/2021

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Video: ‘The incredible farms being run from space’

There’s a seismic shift underway in agriculture. Farming may be among the last industries to undergo a digital revolution, but the changes are arguably going to be further reaching than anything we’ve seen so far. In this in-depth video by the BBC’s ‘Follow the Food’ program, it is said that farming’s digital revolution has potential for both business and the planet to benefit alike. The aim of the transformation is to produce more food from farming with less.
8/24/2021

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Simplot to compensate Tasmanian potato growers on the back of ‘volatile’ year

It’s a risky crop, but Sisters Creek potato farmer Leigh Elphinstone in Tasmania wouldn’t have it any other way, reports Meg Powell in this news story for The Advocate. And the multi-generational farmer’s passion for the simple spud seems to have paid off, helping secure growers like himself an additional $9 a tonne deal with major food manufacturer Simplot over the coming financial year.
8/24/2021

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CropX acquired Dutch-based Dacom Farm Intelligence

CropX, the Israel-based company that produced the world’s first and do-it-yourself (“DIY”) farm management platform based on real-time soil data, announced recently that it acquired Dacom, headquartered in Groningen, the Netherlands. CropX says in a news release that this follows its acquisitions in 2020 of Nebraska based CropMetrics and New-Zealand based ReGen. CropX says: “We’re always excited to join new teams and technologies to the CropX family and continue our search in that respect – all with the goal of providing the best value for our customers.”
8/23/2021

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Canadian crop progressing well, early harvest under way

The potato crop in Canada is now in the very critical growth stage of tuber bulking. Kevin MacIsaac, General Manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada reports that tuber set has been determined and it is now this phase which will provide yield and determine production for this crop. While there is still considerable time left for many growing regions, the Canadian crop in mid-August appears to have good potential (in many but not in all regions) to meet the needs of industry.
8/23/2021

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U.S. potato exports rebound, continued growth expected

Total U.S. potato exports increased by 4% in volume and 1% in value for July 2020 – June 2021 compared to the previous marketing year (MY). The rebound in exports was led by a 9% increase in fresh potatoes, a 10% increase in potato chips, and a 2% increase in frozen exports, accounting for 51% of the total. It is anticipated that with the continued easing of restrictions around the world, U.S. potato exports will continue to grow in MY22.
8/23/2021

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New University of Maine research hub to focus on Potato Virus Y

Greater understanding of the biology of one of the most destructive plant viruses to potato crops will be the focus of a research hub at the University of Maine that is part of a new $6.1 million institute focused on virology and host-virus dynamics, the University says in a news release. Data from studies of all virus systems will be compared and integrated to generate Rules of Life that drive variables such as species jump, virus harbor state, and more.
8/20/2021

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Prairie farmers struggle as drought set to become ‘among worst in Canadian history’

This year’s drought is on its way to becoming the worst the Prairies have ever recorded and the worst ever in Canada, according to John Pomeroy, Canada research chair in water resources and climate change at the University of Saskatchewan. It is already worse than a severe drought in 1961, he said. “It’s early to call it the most severe [drought] at this point, but it certainly has all the hallmarks of heading in that direction.”
8/20/2021

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Potatoes USA: Strong sales at retail, refrigerated potatoes showing largest increase

From July 2020 – June 2021, potato sales increased in dollars by 3% but declined slightly in volume by 0.3% compared to the previous July-June marketing year, according to Potatoes USA. Consumers bought 577 million more pounds of potatoes from July 2020 – June 2021 than July 2018 – June 2019. Refrigerated potatoes had the largest increase compared to the same period the previous year of 10.6% increase in dollars and a 5.3% increase in volume.
8/19/2021

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Summer heat means Idaho farmers are seeing shrunken spuds and onions

Harvest season is underway across the northwest, and farmers in some areas are seeing smaller spuds and onions because of excessive heat earlier this summer. Ben Josephson of Idaho Falls-based Wada Farms said it’s too early to know for sure how everything will turn out this harvest, but so far, some of the Idaho Russets coming out of the ground near Mountain Home and Bruneau are smaller than usual.
8/19/2021

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Haith and R S Cockerill celebrate 21 years of working together

Haith has this month marked 21 years of working with R S Cockerill. The anniversary coincides with the completion of £3m investment into the Yorkshire potato grower and packer’s site in Dunnington, near York. This latest project – the installation of four new grading lines, has been part-funded by an EU Productivity Grant and is the 42nd order that R S Cockerill has awarded to Haith.
8/18/2021

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Germany tops EU’s potato producer list

Last year, a total of 55.3 million tons of potatoes were harvested in the European Union. Most were harvested in Germany and end up as crisp or frozen chips. Germany was the largest producer and accounted for 21.2 per cent of EU production. The overall value of EU processed potato production reached € 9.1 billion in 2019.
8/18/2021

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Spud-tastic photography: Winners of ‘Potato Photographer of the Year 2021’ announced

The proof is in the spud-ing… Following success in 2020, the Potato Photographer of the Year award once again called for spud-loving creatives around the world to photograph the humble potato in 2021. The outcome of the 2021 competition was announced earlier in the week. We share a few of the awards here, courtesy Amateur Photographer.
8/17/2021

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July was the hottest month in recorded human history, report says

Last month was not only the hottest July on record, it was also the hottest month ever recorded on Earth, according to a new report by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “This new record adds to the disturbing and disruptive path that climate change has set for the globe,” NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad said.
8/17/2021

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New project to focus on PCN in Scottish potato fields

A major new project will tackle pests in potatoes through the protection of clean land and the management of land already infested with pests. The project will focus specifically on tackling potato cyst nematode (PCN), which is becoming an increasing challenge with its presence in some fields across Scotland.
8/17/2021

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