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Potato severely affected by Common Scab (Photo: AHDB Potatoes)

Widespread scab reported as UK potato harvest progresses

As the potato harvest in the United Kingdom progresses, there are increasing reports of widespread scab. The weather in the United Kingdom was mixed last week, with some cooler temperatures but also warm and muggy at times. Rain showers have been sporadic and widespread.

In the East, good and often above average yields have been reported for the region with lifting ahead of previous years. Lifting of early varieties is underway and most crops are now burnt off, however, skin set is taking longer than normal. Scab has now been reported as widespread on susceptible varieties and following heavy rain last week, localised waterlogging has led to some circumstances of bacterial rot. Good dry matters are continually reported.

In the West, crops are coming on with generally good yields. Lifting of green top M Piper is underway, with the majority of burning off due to be completed within the next two weeks. Scab is reported as widespread but not altering demand at this stage. A small amount of localised blight has been reported and is being treating accordingly.

In the South, early lifting is coming to a close, with varieties such as Marfona giving way to Estima and later varieties. Yields have been reported as good to date, however, scab is often present, especially on salads. Weather conditions have not hindered field work with progress generally seen as ahead of normal.

In Scotland, trade is starting to pick up with the early lifting of whites well underway. Crop development has been reported as very good with excellent quality tubers, however, numbers could be better. The generally wetter weather in Scotland has led to fewer reports of scab than in other regions for most varieties with the exception of M Piper, which has proved more susceptible.

Source: PotatoPro

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