A study led by a UC Berkeley post-doctoral researcher has helped uncover the origin of the pathogen responsible for the Irish potato famine. According to the study, published this month in the Molecular Biology and Evolution journal, scientists have long sought to determine whether the pathogen was introduced to Ireland from South America or Mexico and where the pathogen had evolved into its modern form. Researchers determined the closest relative of the pathogen is a species found in the Andes Mountains, providing strong evidence that the pathogen had originally evolved in South America as opposed to Mexico, according to Michael Martin, the lead author of the study.
Scientists have discovered that eating potatoes and cabbage can help reduce the risk of developing stomach cancer. It found that people who eat a large amount of white vegetables, such as onions and cauliflower, were a third less likely to develop it than those who did not eat them. But the risk was increased through beers, spirits, salt and preserved food. The study was conducted by scientists at Zhejiang University in China. It used 76 existing studies into diet and stomach cancer which have involved 6.3m people being surveyed and 33,000 deaths from the disease.
Chris Voigt, executive director of the Washington State Potato Commission, said the 2015 harvest has generally been picture perfect. “This was one of the smoothest harvest seasons we’ve had in Washington,” he told The Produce News. “There were no major delays, and the crop got into the barn much earlier than normal.” He provided some additional insights about the crop. “The crop looks good, but yields are down due to the high heat we experienced this summer,” Voigt continued. “The USDA announced [the week of Nov. 8] that per acre yields were down about 4 percent in Washington state. I think that number surprised a lot of us. We were expecting the crop yield to be down maybe 7-9 percent. Even if the USDA numbers are correct, supplies will be tight this marketing season.”
Results from early trials conducted by CIP, show great promise in the global quest to tame late blight, the scourge of smallholder potato farmers and large producers globally. “Everywhere you grow potatoes, you have late blight,” says Marc Ghislain, program leader at CIP. “It is the number-one disease afflicting potato crops.” Conventional potato breeding is slow and unpredictable, CIP program leader Greg Forbes notes, often taking decades to produce a new cultivar. By the time a gene is successfully introduced into a cultivated variety, the late blight pathogen may already have evolved the ability to overcome it. Because of this, fungicides are the primary means farmers have to attempt to stave off against late blight’s advance, says Ghislain. “There would be a significant impact if we could provide to the smallholder a [potato] variety that is less dependent on fungicides” to thrive, he explains.
The Agriculture Ministry's Central Administration for Agricultural Quarantine in Egypt has announced that it will be inspecting potato seeds imported from EU member countries more closely before allowing them into Egypt. Quarantine chief Saad Moussa said Saturday that seeds imported from France, Scotland, England, Netherlands and Denmark currently under his administration's checks have stood at 21,000 tons.
Het bijengif potatoprid, met het giftige bestrijdingsmiddel imidacloprid, is vanaf 1 januari 2016 verboden in de aardappelteelt. Dit heeft het Ctgb vandaag besloten, naar aanleiding van het bezwaarschrift van Natuur & Milieu en Greenpeace. Via de rechter hebben de milieuorganisaties deze uitspraak afgedwongen. ‘Dit is goed nieuws voor de bijen. De bijensterfte neemt toe door het gebruik van giftige bestrijdingsmiddelen. Daarom pleiten wij voor een verbod hierop. Hoe eerder deze middelen verboden zijn, hoe beter,’ aldus Sijas Akkerman, hoofd Voedsel bij Natuur & Milieu.
One frozen potato-product supplier operates 15 potato-processing plants globally. The automated French fry production process begins with the delivery of raw potatoes to the plants. The potatoes are then machine peeled, washed, cut, dipped in batter, fried, frozen and finally packaged for distribution. This continuous process takes approximately 1.5 to 2 hours with no bottlenecks or process upsets. When the supplier decided to build a new continuous process plant for frozen French fries in eastern Oregon, it wanted to establish a new control standard for its frozen potato plants globally. The company decided on a standardized approach in response to challenges encountered with an automated process control system at a similar facility in Louisiana. In June 2013, the potato product supplier collaborated with a consultant to design and implement a continuous-process automation system for its frozen French fry production facility in eastern Oregon. The company selected a process automation system that is scalable, flexible DCS for plant-wide control. Concept Systems worked with process designers to design, implement and commission the new system.
The European Union Wednesday announced 5 million euro project meant to set common potato seed systems between Rwanda and Uganda and other five African countries. The project was announced at the opening of a three day regional workshop on improving farmers’ access to quality potato seed in Kigali. Participants included officials from regional and international organizations. The money will be channeled through the Food and Agriculture Organization. Other beneficiary countries include Benin, Cameroon, Ivory Cost, Ghana and Malawi.
Uchikura Farms Ltd. of Burdett was named the 2014-2015 McCain Champion Potato Grower for the McCain Coaldale plant in Alberta at the 16th Annual McCain Growers’ Banquet held Nov. 3 at the Coast Hotel and Conference Centre. Jeff DeLapp, regional president, North America, and Allison McCain, chairman, McCain Foods Limited were on hand to extend personal congratulations to Uchikura Farms and all of the McCain growers. In his address to the group, DeLapp stressed the importance of growers to McCain and the need to work together in partnership. “We can’t be successful without each other,” DeLapp said. “So we need to think of each other’s business as we deal with challenges in the marketplace. It is only by working together that we will discover the lower cost, higher quality options that we need for the future.” Allison McCain agreed, noting it is important to focus on costs because 60 per cent of what we process here is exported to other countries.
Better Made Snack Foods, celebrating its 85th year in business, keeps rethinking its products as consumer tastes continue to shift to snacks that are lower in salt, fat and calories. But regardless of national trends, chips still rule. “Our best seller is still chips,” said Mark Winkelman, president of the Detroit-based company. Better Made is part of a group of regional family-owned chip companies such as Utz Quality Foods in Hanover, Pa.; Mikesells Snack Food Co. in Dayton, Ohio; and Ballreich’s Potato Chip Co. in Tiffin, Ohio. In Michigan, the only other chip maker is family-owned Uncle Ray’s in Detroit. In response to offering healthier choices, Better Made created Better Pop Guilt-Free Popcorn, which is lower in fat and sodium. It also manufactures low-salt, no-salt and baked chips.
Het bijengif potatoprid, met het giftige bestrijdingsmiddel imidacloprid, is vanaf 1 januari 2016 verboden in de aardappelteelt. Dit heeft het Ctgb vandaag besloten, naar aanleiding van het bezwaarschrift van Natuur & Milieu en Greenpeace. Via de rechter hebben de milieuorganisaties deze uitspraak afgedwongen. ‘Dit is goed nieuws voor de bijen. De bijensterfte neemt toe door het gebruik van giftige bestrijdingsmiddelen. Daarom pleiten wij voor een verbod hierop. Hoe eerder deze middelen verboden zijn, hoe beter,’ aldus Sijas Akkerman, hoofd Voedsel bij Natuur & Milieu.
Fusarium infections in potatoes are common, but more strains are showing resistance to fungicides. 
“Resistance management is an important piece to consider when making plans about how we are going to manage fusarium,” Mike Harding, a plant pathologist at Alberta Agriculture’s Crop Development Centre, told Potato Growers of Alberta’s annual meeting held in Red Deer Nov. 18-19. There is no single way to control the disease, so growers need to use as many best management practices as they can to keep it from destroying an entire crop. 
“Fusarium diseases can sneak up or sometimes cause losses that go seemingly unnoticed,” he said. 
“They are especially problematic when we try to store potatoes for a long time because people like to eat potatoes all year long.”
 “It is important to understand the biology so that we can make the correct decisions,” he said.
Using some ancient DNA detective work, a new study led by Mike Martin, University of California Berkeley postdoctoral researcher, and Tom Gilbert, professor at University of Copenhagen, has linked the culprit behind the 19th century Irish potato famine, which was transported to Europe in the 1840s, to a fungus-like organism that originated in South America. Just how the pathogen, called Phytophthora infestans, made the transatlantic leap to destroy potato crops on a global scale is a "Guns, Germs, and Steel"-like tale of New World exploration and devastation published in the advanced online edition of Molecular Biology and Evolution. The authors used genome sequences from 71 modern and historical samples of the microbial pathogen, a unique collection culled from worldwide private archives, to construct the ancestral tree of the pathogen. The origin of the species dates back to 1558 AD, the age when the first Europeans explored South America.
North American potato production is expected to increase 2% this season. About 513 million cwt. are set to be produced in 2015-16 in the U.S. and Canada, according to the Nov. 24 North American Potatoes report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. U.S. fall production is estimated at 409 million cwt., 1% more than 2014. Canadian growers are expected to produce about 105 million cwt., 4% more than last year.
Whether they’re fried or mashed, potatoes remain a staple in the American diet, with potatoes accounting for 15 percent of vegetable farm sales. Even though sweet potatoes are currently experiencing an uptick in popularity largely thanks to their nutritional benefits, potato remains king among American farmers. More than 44 billion pounds of potatoes were harvested in 2015, compared with just a little under 3 billion pounds of sweet potatoes. One of the reasons potatoes continue to be such a dominant part of the American diet is that we’re constantly inventing new ways to eat them. Starting in 1970, processed potato products surpassed raw potatoes in sales, and consumption of fresh potatoes fell from a high of 81 pounds per person in 1960 to an average of 42 pounds by the 2000s. But potato production has continued to increase as people find different ways to get their potato fix. On average, Americans now consume 55 pounds of frozen potatoes per year in addition to 17 pounds of potato chips.
To protect their investment, it’s important for growers to keep on top of the latest innovations in ventilation, humidification and spout control when storing their potato crops. Spud Smart magazine in Canada talked to some industry experts about new equipment, products and technologies aimed at ensuring storage success. Ashley Gorman, vice-president of sales at P.E.I.-based Gorman Controls, believes the most important new technologies to hit the scene in recent years have been those that provide growers with increased control of storage ventilation systems from afar. Huub Kasius, managing director of Dutch firm AgroVent BV, informs about VaccTek, an innovative potato drying system offered by AgroVent that will be available in Canada soon. Researchers from another Netherlands-based company, Omnivent, are looking at perfecting quality control in storage through an innovative data collection and assessment model that looks at how minute environmental changes can affect crops in storage.
There may be a small decrease in the costs of potato production this year for the second year running, but the long-term trend is for them to increase. This is partly because the price of red diesel has gone down by almost 25 per cent, and fertiliser costs are benefiting from a 4 per cent drop in the cost of nitrogen. Speaking at BP2015, Bidwells partner Neil Cameron said the downturn in profitability in the arable sector also means machinery prices are not going up so quickly, with second-hand models cheaper to buy. Nevertheless, smaller growers are still tending to sell-out to bigger enterprises as the industry continues consolidating, he said.
The combination of later harvest and good growing conditions at the end of the harvest has caused the NEPG to raise the yield figures of the five NEPG countries from 1 October by 300,000 tonnes, to 25,157,000 tonnes. The Belgian yield of the non Bintje varieties are the main cause of this. Whereas on the 1st of October in Belgian a ha yield of 47 tonnes was predicted, the yield prediction is now 51.2 tonnes per ha. When the figures of all participating countries are known in a week or two, the NEPG will be able to publish the final yield. The yield is lower than last season and still slightly under the five year average. There are large differences reported in quality and quantity from area to area, but also from variety to variety. Harvest 2015 is the latest harvest in the NEPG history.
The man who developed the strategy for Keogh’s potatoes and luxury crisps in a bid to reverse the decline in Ireland’s potato market has been named Marketer of the Year. Tom Keogh researched how Irish people consume potatoes and grew a premium strategy through ties with retailers and innovative PR with the ‘Keogh’s – Grown with Love in Ireland’ brand. Knowing that potatoes needed to be marketed to a new and younger consumer, ‘farmeter’ Tom Keogh led by putting his family’s agribusiness front of stage by launching world first innovations with Easy Cook in 2008 and the Selena selenium rich potato more recently. The Selena targets potato lovers in search of a healthier, more functional food.
Roughly one-quarter of the Argentine potato harvest, or around 500,000 tonnes, is industrially processed each year, a new report on pre-fried frozen French fry production authored by agriculture ministry analyst Daniel Franco stated.
DRONES, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), are used for many different purposes these days – everything from remote warfare to parcel delivery and good old-fashioned fun. But crop scientists at the University of Aberdeen and the James Hutton Institute believe the aircraft can take potato breeding into the future. Resembling scaled-down stealth bombers, these remotely controlled drones are mounted with a camera and take hundreds of pictures as they fly repeated missions over the tattie fields. Surveyors then collate all the images and create a three-dimensional model of the crop.
ConAgra, which purchased Lamb Weston in 1988, is spinning off that part of its operation by the fall of 2016. Lamb Weston officials say the move should not impact the American Falls potato processing plant. ConAgra announced this week that it plans to divest itself of the frozen-potato products operation, which are sold to restaurants and commercial customers, to focus on grocery-store brands including Peter Pan peanut butter, PAM cooking spray and Hebrew National hotdogs under a new business name of Conagra Brands, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal. Lamb Weston has operated a potato processing plant in American Falls for more than five decades and currently employs 600 people.
Tong Engineering, Britse producent van machines voor de aardappelteelt, introduceert een ‘slimme’ versie van hun EasyFill kistenvuller. Die werd tijdens het British Potato Event op 12 en 13 november geïntroduceerd. Tong kan de Easyfill enkele en dubbele kistenvullers al meerdere jaren met een weegplatform leveren. Is het vooraf ingestelde gewicht bereikt, dan slaat de vuller automatisch af. Die techniek gebruikt het nu om digitaal informatie over de kist met aardappelen op te slaan. Daarvoor moet iedere aardappelkist wel van een barcode worden voorzien. Dat is goedkoper dan een computerchip.




Klik op bovenstaande afbeelding om ons duurzaamheidsverslag te bekijken!

Om deze website optimaal te laten functioneren gebruiken wij cookies. Voor meer informatie zie ons cookiebeleid.