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Secure your space for the Storage 2020 International Potato Conference

30 January 2014

 

Next month over 200 growers, packers, processors, retailers, researchers, specialists, consultants, and international visitors are expected to attend the Storage 2020 International Conference at Peterborough Arena. 

 
The Storage 2020 International Conference, sponsored by Certis, takes place 13 February and has a unique agenda focused on the future of 365 days a year potato supply.  
 
The conference, hosted by AHDB Potatoes, features horizon scanning plenary sessions which will consider the role storage will play in the future production of potatoes and other agricultural crops. Online registration is now live at www.potato.org.uk/storage2020
 
“In GB, the lion share of our potato supply is delivered ex-store,” says Adrian Cunnington, head of Sutton Bridge Crop Storage Research. “Around 60 per cent of the 5.5m tonne 2013/14 crop was stored by growers from the end of November. This ensures markets are secured with domestic material to the following season. Therefore new store technology, cost control, and ensuring the health and the sustainability of the crop are crucial.”   
 
“Storage 2020 has a bespoke line-up of international experts and practically-focused workshops, carefully chosen to add value to your business. The comprehensive programme is packed with relevant topics specifically tailored to prepare for the future and to provide ideas and solutions to benefit your bottom line.” 
 
World class plenary sessions
 
Renowned Dutch speaker, Romke Wustman of Wageningen UR – PPO, Lelystad in the Netherlands will deliver the opening paper on why we need to store. Romke will outline where the global demand for food will be over the decades ahead, how this demand will be met and the role storage will play.  
 
His address will discuss population growth and explore examples of systems being adopted in different continents to meet rising food demand.
 
Romke will provide expert opinion on the likely impact in Europe, the effect of competition and whether we will we need to grow more and have increased storage capacity to allow us to provide year round supply from our own crops, rather than supplementing with imported crop. 
 
With 28 years’ experience in potato production for the fresh retail market, Greenvale’s technical director Paul Coleman will discuss how we store potatoes more cost-effectively, especially against a background of ever-increasing energy costs and how new technologies can be put to best effect.
 
And international storage guru Todd Forbush from Techmark Inc. of Michigan, USA will offer guidance on technology solutions to progressive potato, fruit and vegetable producers and companies across the world. 
 
Todd’s specialist knowledge takes him to both developing and developed nations which includes advising in extreme environments, including a current potato storage project in Alaska. Todd will provide expert opinion and insight into technical developments in storage expected on a global basis by 2020.  
 
“Storage 2020 has been put together to reflect the future of year-round potato supply and the core topics that will affecting the industry,” says event sponsor Morley Benson, of Certis UK. “This unmissable conference is an excellent opportunity to understand how GB, as part of the global potato industry, will achieve greater sustainability and profitability over the next six years.”
 
Technical workshops
 
Sandwiched neatly in the middle of the key note speakers, delegates will get the choice of three out of five practically-focused technically themed workshops.  
 
The industry goes to great lengths to keep potatoes stable during storage, investing in sophisticated storage facilities and store management systems to ensure that crops are at their optimum when delivered to customers. 
 
SASA’s Gerry Saddler, AHDB Potatoes’s head of seed and export Rob Burns, and the James Hutton Institute’s Finlay Dale are the line-up for the seed management for storage session which will feature the latest thinking in non-indigenous bacterial threats; ensuring a Safe Haven for seed health and breeding for storage. 
 
The key issues of importance to the fresh and processing sectors are the themes of the supply chain dynamics sessions. Presented by Dan Hewitt of Nelson County Potatoes, Pepsico’s John Horrocks, and James Lee of Greenvale AP the workshop will bring together storage options for supply chains of the future and discuss sustainability in the fresh and processing markets.
 
CIPC is our most important sprout suppressant and is critical to the industry ‘as we know it’. Following EU review (91/414) of older compounds, CIPC was placed in Stewardship because of occasional, anomalous exceedances of the MRL. 
 
During five years of stewardship, occasional exceedances have continued and in September 2013, the Advisory Committee on Pesticides concluded that, while registration of products could continue, industry had more to do to minimise the risks of exceedances of the MRL. 
 
Adrian Briddon from Sutton Bridge Crop Storage Research, Richard Colgan from the Natural Resources Institute and Tjaart Hofman of Certis Europe will lead the session on sprout suppression. This will include best practice for residue control and sprout suppression alternatives including the latest information on ethylene. 
 
Diseases such as Pectobacterium cost the industry £millions and to deliver quality potatoes out of store it is essential that bacterial diseases are managed effectively. But the increase in global marketing and the expansion of the EU has also increased the risk of non–indigenous organisms being introduced. 
 
New pests and diseases could result in severe financial losses and the future sustainability of the supply chain is at risk from increasing threats from new organisms that can potentially devastate a crop. Zebra chip is not yet established in the EU but the threat of that happening is very real.
Disease and defects during storage also have a financial consequence that can be mitigated, at least in part, by an early recognition of problems. Such knowledge can be used to decide best store management control options or store unloading. 
 
The disease and pests workshop line-up will address these topics and includes the James Hutton Institute’s Ian Toth, AHDB Potatoes’s Mike Storey, and Glyn Harper from Sutton Bridge Crop Storage Research.
 
Air distribution within a store impacts on temperature profiles and chemical distribution, therefore the importance of achieving uniform airflow and the implications this has for optimising store efficiency is vital. Store air leakage also has a major impact on store running costs. 
 
David Turner of Turner Agriculture, Jon Swain of the Farm Energy Centre and Adrian Cunnington from Sutton Bridge will run the demonstration session, supported by Omnivent, on storage systems which will feature optimising store performance, energy efficiency and fungicide application.
 
Spaces filling fast
 
Don’t miss out, the conference costs AHDB Potatoes levy-payers £30 +VAT, and other delegates £75 +VAT. To view full programme and to register for your Storage2020 tickets go to: www.potato.org.uk/storage2020
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