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Browsing Category Fall 2014

Stakeholder Day at Potato Research Centre a Success

The recent Stakeholder Day at the Potato Research Centre was a resounding success, according to Ed Hurley, associate director of research, development and technology at the Agriculture and Agri-Food facility in Fredericton, N.B. More than 40 members of the farm, business and scientific communities in New Brunswick and across the Maritimes toured the PRC on Nov. 26 to see the latest work by potato research scientists and what it could mean for…

P.E.I. Potato Board Offering a $50,000 REWARD in Tampering Case

The Prince Edward Island Potato Board says the recent potato tampering case in that province “has left our industry feeling shocked, and is unacceptable for ourselves and the general public.” Members of the PEIPB joined police officials at a press conference in Charlottetown on Nov. 10 to announce they are seeking the public’s help in identifying suspects involved in the case. RCMP in P.E.I. are investigating seven incidents of food tampering after…

China Honours Canadian Potato Scientist

Prominent Canadian potato scientist and grower Peter VanderZaag has received a prestigious honour from the Chinese government. At a special ceremony at Yunnan Normal University (YNNU) in Kunming, China, on Oct. 30, VanderZaag was given the National Friendship Award, the People’s Republic of China’s highest accolade for foreign experts who have made outstanding contributions to the country’s economic and social progress. Peter VanderZaag has spent 29 years supporting food security efforts in…

A Growing Business in Alberta

A lot has changed on Mike Wind’s southern Alberta potato operation since he started Windiana Farms back in 1990. For starters, the farm located near Taber, Alta., is much bigger. Initially it was 320 acres in size, but now Windiana comprises 3,600 acres of farmland — of that, 900 acres are dedicated to potatoes. “I started with a half section and have grown it to what it is today,” says Wind. “We…

At the Root

People News MCCAIN NAMES NEW CANADIAN PRESIDENT McCain Foods Limited has named Shai Altman as its new Canadian president effective Oct. 20. He brings to McCain more than 15 years of leadership experience in both mature and developing markets with expertise in the development and direction of growth strategies. Altman joins McCain from Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, where he held the position of Wrigley Canada president since 2009. Altman replaces Darryl Rowe,…

World Review

United States Declining potato consumption by Americans has Texas A&M AgriLife Research breeders working on “designer” spuds that meet the time constraints and unique tastes of a younger generation. “So what we are doing now is developing unique varieties that have a tendency to appeal to the younger set with high income who are willing to try something different,” says Creighton Miller, an AgriLife Research potato breeder. “This has contributed to an…

Market News

CANADA’S POTATO crop production for 2014 is expected to be slightly lower than last year, according to the United Potato Growers of Canada. Recent UPGC figures show a drop of just over three per cent nationally, with the biggest decline in Manitoba where crop production is expected to be down almost 15 per cent from a year ago.  Quebec, with a close to nine per cent decline, and Ontario, with a nearly…

Variable Rate Irrigation

In recent years, the concept known as variable rate irrigation or VRI has become a catchphrase among irrigation specialists and growers alike. Some would even describe it as precision agriculture applied to irrigation. In essence, VRI is the process of applying differing irrigation amounts to match crop water demands at a small scale within a particular field. Most irrigation equipment manufacturers in Canada nowadays offer systems that are or can be retrofitted…

From our Desk

The Benefit of Field Days

Field days. Most potato-producing regions of the country saw at least one of these this past summer, providing growers with the opportunity to learn about new varieties and agronomic practices, check out the latest farm equipment and technologies, and network with their peers and industry types. And perhaps even as importantly, relax a little bit. Peter VanderZaag, who was MC at the 2014 Ontario Field Day in Alliston, Ont. in August, will…

Eye On The Nation

New Brunswick By Louis Ouellette, Market Information Co-ordinator Potatoes New Brunswick It was a very pleasant summer here in New Brunswick. A late spring got the crop into the ground about two weeks behind normal planting time, but almost ideal temperatures helped this year’s crop make up some much-needed time over the growing season. As of mid-September, the northern part of New Brunswick’s potato belt had received adequate rain and many growers…

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