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United Potato Growers of Canada: Potato Crop and Harvest Update October 5, 2018

Prince Edward Island The summer of 2018 has been extremely dry, and poor growing conditions continued in the month of September. Some early variety fields had started to show their age early due to stressful growing conditions. Tuber set appears to be down and sampling throughout the season showed the crop to be almost two weeks behind normal. The crop needed an open fall with favourable growing conditions and extended time to…

North-Western Potato Harvest Estimated at 24 Million Tons

The North-Western European Potato Growers estimates the upcoming consumption harvest 18 per cent under last year’s and eight per cent under the five-year average. This, in spite of the fact the total consumption area grew 8.4 per cent over the last five years. The extreme drought and high temperatures all over North-Western Europe resulted in an estimated average yield between 40 and 41 tons per hectare in the five leading potato countries….

USDA Potatoes 2017 Summary Released

The United States Department of Agriculture released its Potatoes 2017 Summary (September 2018). According to the report 2017 potato production is up slightly. All potato production in 2017 totaled 442 million cwt, up slightly from the 2016 crop. Harvested area, at 1.02 million acres, was up 1 per cent from 2016. The average yield of 431 cwt per acre was down 2 cwt from the previous year. Spring potato final production for…

New Label Expansion for Frontier Max Herbicide

MISSISSAUGA, Ont.— On Sept. 24, 2018, BASF Canada Inc. was granted a new label expansion for FrontierMax herbicide, for control of annual grasses and key broadleaf weeds in potatoes. In addition to its expanded label on potatoes, Frontier Max is also registered for use on corn, soybeans, dry beans, onions, cabbage and grapes. “Potato growers continue to look for new solutions for their weed control challenges, and we believe Frontier Max will…

Barcelona: Fresh Market Variety

“Barcelona looks promising for Ontario,” says Eugenia Banks, a potato specialist with the Ontario Potato Board. Recently, at a variety trial at Brenn-B Farms, and in a field without irrigation, Banks notes the potato variety Barcelona performed very well. Out of a number of varieties that did well this summer, Barcelona was the highest yielding at 550 hundredweight per acre, says Banks. Barcelona is a yellow-fleshed variety with smooth skin. The previous…

Verticillium and Weeds

Verticillium wilt is a major soil-borne disease that can result in yield losses as high as 50 per cent in potatoes. The roots of a potato plant, or other host plant, release compounds that stimulate the germination of Verticillium dahliae microsclerotia, the fungus’s survival structures in the soil. The fungus then grows, penetrates the plant’s roots and spreads up the plant, eventually causing wilting, yellowing and early dying in potatoes. “As Verticillium dahliae completes…

New and Improved Potato Scanning and Handling Systems

Any technology that helps maximize profit and minimize waste is welcome in agriculture, and potato farming is no exception. There are some recent updates on new and established scanning and handling systems now available or soon to be marketed. You have likely heard about the SmartSpud, a revolutionary Canadian device produced by Masitek Instruments of Moncton, N.B., that travels through potato equipment from harvester to packaging, mimicking a real potato. It provides…

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