b'Goyer notes the lesions arent dangerous to humans. Potatoes with common scab can still be consumed, however common scab makes them ugly. In the worse cases of common scab, the lesions can go deep making holes in the potatoes.The industry rule is if more than five per cent of the surface of tubers are covered with common scab, theyre unable to be sold to the table market. Goyer says spuds with common scab are harder to peel, making them less desirable for the fry market also.Its really an issue both for table and processing, then of course its even worse for seed production. They really dont want common scab because nobody wants to spread that disease everywhere, she adds.Irrigation does help reduce common scab incidence though as it keeps soils from drying out, Goyer explains. Searching for a Canadian SolutionIn 2018, Goyer started on her common scab project. Working with collaborators in Manitoba, Ontario, P.E.I. and New Brunswick, they collected samples of potatoes with common scab symptoms for testing. Pathogens of common scab present in Canada were then isolated from infected tubers andPotatoes with common scab symptoms on them. characterized using molecular testing. So far Goyer says theyPHOTO: CLAUDIA GOYERhave a collection of 300 isolates with at least 20 genetic groups.Goyer says the most common species found in Canada is This shows that theres a lot of diversity in the pathogens,Streptomyces scabies. Another species, Streptomyces acidiscabies, which then might explain why were having so much troublewas also found to be present, but its more common in acidic finding solutions to control the disease, right? Like its so widelysoils and was first discovered in Maine. different in how they behave, it becomes more difficult to find aAfter determining the genetic groups, Goyer and her team control method that works everywhere, she explains. started to develop tools to look closer at how they are distributed INNOVATIVEECONOMICALRELIABLEENJOYABLE40SPUDSMART.COM Winter 2022'