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Researchers Engineer Heat Tolerance in Potato Crops

Scientists at the James Hutton Institute and the University of St. Andrews have developed a technique to ‘engineer’ heat tolerance in potato crops, potentially providing potato breeders with a valuable tool in their quest to create varieties suited to the requirements of growers, industry and retailers. The potato crop is particularly vulnerable to increased temperature, which is considered to be the most important uncontrollable factor affecting growth and yield, according to the…

Quebec eyes Seed Potato Export to Latin America and Caribbean

Over the past few decades, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Alberta have exported a considerable amount of seed potatoes from Canada to Latin America and the Caribbean. However, the export market in some of those countries has decreased substantially in the past couple of years. Meanwhile, seed potato growers from Quebec have almost exclusively exported their seed potatoes to the U.S. Recently, a couple of seed potato companies from Quebec, together…

AAFC brings wild relatives into potato breeding

Whether its disease resistance, tolerance to stress in the environment or better cold-storage capabilities, research scientists have been incorporating wild potato genetic resources into breeding lines for years to develop more resilient potato varieties. At Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Fredericton Research and Development Centre, this practice is being increasingly refined in order to meet the needs of the industry which range from higher yields to disease and drought resistance. In fact, AAFC…

Keeping potatoes alive: We’ve got your “backup”

Housed in Canada’s centre of excellence for potato research along the Saint John River Valley in Fredericton, N.B., Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s scientists maintain a living library of nearly 180 potentially high-value potato gene resources. Canada’s potato gene bank, or Canadian Potato Genetic Resources, is part of an international commitment to global food security. If disease or a natural disaster strikes and potato crops are devastated, researchers from anywhere in the world…

GMO potatoes will not be grown commercially in Canada this year

There will be no commercially grown GMO potatoes in Canada this year according to J.R. Simplot Company that developed the Innate potato. Innate potatoes bruise less and have less black spots than conventional potatoes. Doug Cole, Simplot’s director of marketing and communications, said the company is holding off allowing commercial growth of Innate potatoes in Canada until there’s a proven market for them. “There is strong interest from the grower community and retailers are also…

Genetically engineered potatoes approved for Maine

The Maine Board of Pesticides Control unanimously approved on Friday, May 12 the registration of three new types of genetically engineered potatoes that have been developed by a major Idaho agribusiness company. The means that J.R. Simplot Co.’s Russet Burbank, Ranger Russet and Atlantic potatoes could be planted in Maine fields at any time. By adding genes from a wild potato plant, these potatoes were created. These potato types are designed to…

The Promise of Innate

There’s been plenty of talk in Canadian potato circles this past year about Innate, the genetically modified potato from J.R. Simplot Company that’s been given the green light by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Health Canada. Those approvals came too late for the product to be grown commercially in Canada in 2016, but don’t be surprised if Innate potatoes make an appearance this year. Kevin MacIsaac, general manager of the…

More Than Just a Purple Potato

Although potato growers, large grocery chains and potato processors continue to meet the consumer’s insatiable appetite for fries and chips, the consumption value of all potato varieties is being lost in the bin. When the potato was given a bad reputation in the high protein diet craze, consumers began to move to other starches. Recently, the industry has attempted to prompt a new conversation about the nutritional value of the humble spud….

New Potato Varieties 2017

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) rolled out 15 new potato varieties to growers and industry representatives on Feb. 13 at three open houses: Fredericton, N.B., Guelph, Ont. and Lethbridge, Alta. The open houses were an opportunity for AAFC researchers to share results of the agency’s potato breeding program’s accelerated release selections. Twelve of the 15 new varieties unveiled are classified as fresh market or dual purpose use, while the three remaining varieties…

Innate Second Generation Potatoes Receive EPA and FDA Clearances

Feb. 28, 2017, Boise, Idaho — The J.R. Simplot Company announced today that the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have completed their independent reviews and granted registrations and clearances for three varieties of Simplot’s second generation of Innate potatoes. The three varieties have already been deregulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) so these new agency registrations and clearances permit these proprietary bioengineered…

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