Connect With Us

Browsing Category Viewpoints

From our Desk

Andean Potatoes Take The World Stage

For the first time in its history, the World Potato Congress will take place in Latin America, the “birthplace” of the potato. From May 27 to 31 of this year, hundreds of people from around the world will descend on Cusco, Peru, to attend the 10th annual event, organized by the not-for-profit World Potato Congress Inc. The World Potato Congress is dedicated to supporting the cultivation and development of potato around the…

Eye On The Nation

ALBERTA By Terence Hochstein, Executive Director, Potato Growers of Alberta Alberta’s 2017 crop turned out to be a mixed bag. While quality remains excellent, our yields were all over the place. Some fields had Russet crops going down mid-August which greatly affected their yields. The ones that stayed green until mid-September were quite a bit better yielding. Like many growing areas across Canada, the increasing occurrence of Verticillium wilt (early die) is…

Reaping Rewards of Processing Plant Expansion

After years of stagnant growth, the potato processing industry in North America is on the rise. Numerous processors have expanded or opened plants in the last year or two in response to growing demand for french fries and other potato products. For instance, McCain Foods expanded its potato processing facilities in Idaho and New Brunswick in 2016, and growers in both areas are reaping the benefits. Blair Young, who grows 600 acres…

Healthy Seed Helps Ensure Healthy Yield

Ideal growing conditions, optimum fertility, pest and disease control – all these things are crucial to ensure a high-yielding, healthy crop. But before the seed goes in the ground, it’s crucial growers ensure the seed they’re planting is as healthy as possible. For this edition of Roundtable, Spud Smart gathered some expert opinions on why it’s important potato growers plant the best seed they can get their hands on. Our five experts…

From our Desk

Psyllids and Zebra Chip

University of Lethbridge biogeography professor Dan Johnson has been monitoring Prairie potato fields for the past few years, looking for evidence of the potato psyllid and a bacterium it can carry that can lead to zebra chip disease in potato crops. The good news: So far in 2017, the number of potato psyllids has been lower than in previous years, both in Canada and the U.S. The better news: None of the…

Eye On The Nation

ALBERTA By Terence Hochstein, Executive Director, Potato Growers of Alberta Alberta’s spring got off to what most would consider a normal spring, with good weather and normal moisture. Planting got underway in the south about April 20, with the north seed areas starting about three weeks later. It’s a good thing we had early spring moisture because that is the last that most growing areas received. The south has not received any…

Potato Storage: Keeping an Eye on the Prize

The case could be made that caring for potatoes and for children have a lot in common: Let your guard down for a minute and you’ll pay for it in the end. Like parenting, potato storage is an area in which expert advice can save a lot of headaches and wrong turns. In this edition of Roundtable, Spud Smart turned to three experts on the ins and outs of potato storage: Robert…

Potato Farming Family Finds Room to Grow

As a kid growing up in the Netherlands, JP Claassen knew he wanted to be a potato farmer just like his dad. The problem was where to do just that. Claassen’s father Louis and his uncle Anselm cultivated seed potatoes on 140 acres of fertile Dutch farmland close to the North Sea. Between the two of them, they had five sons. The two brothers knew if their boys all grew up to…

Eye On The Nation

MANITOBA By Dan Sawatzky, General Manager, Keystone Potato Producers Association Growers in Manitoba experienced an excellent start to the season, seeing good potential in the crop this year. Although planting began a little behind last year, the majority of the crop did get planted during the first 10 days of May, bringing it in line with average planting completion. Crop development was rapid, with row closure beginning by the third week of…

From our Desk

Fries Get Bum Rap

It happens constantly: news writers get all hot and sweaty whenever “bad food” news releases are dropped on their desks. Red meat is bad for you. Coffee is bad for you. Booze is bad for you. To be fair, that last one could be correct, but only if you overindulge. And isn’t that the crux? Everything in moderation, that’s the key. So it was bound to happen sooner or later. Potatoes, specifically…

Older Articles »

You have successfully signed up for our newsletter!

Open