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Grower Gateway February 2010

Publication Date: 
25 August 2011

AHDB Potatoes sends Grower Gateway via email to those who we feel will benefit (growers, agronomists and technical managers).


Rob Clayton appointed interim director
Rob Clayton, head of knowledge transfer for the AHDB Potatoes, has been appointed interim director. More ...


International attention for seed potatoes at Fruit Logistica
The AHDB Potatoes (PCL) recorded 100 international enquiries about seed potatoes at their exhibit at this year’s record breaking Fruit Logistica exhibition in Berlin (February 3–5, 2010). Additionally, many of the visitors signed up to receive further information via AHDB Potatoes international World Service export newsletter, resulting in a circulation increase of 20%. More ...


Important developments revealed at AHDB Potatoes Forums
The 200 delegates who attended the AHDB Potatoes (PCL) forums over three days learned about the latest advances in PCL-funded research on late blight as well as practical and constructive information on optimising the use of inputs in the highly competitive potato sector. More ...


The fight against blight
An improved AHDB Potatoes Fight Against Blight service highlighting the frequency of Smith Periods was presented at the February Blight Forum, providing a season-by-season comparison for growers and advisers.  More ...


Genetic research may help control blight
For over 150 years, potato breeders have been waging war against blight. And in that time, they’ve made little progress. All today’s key varieties remain susceptible to this devastating disease to a greater or lesser degree, and farmers are still spending £20m a year on fungicides to control it.  More ...


Encouraging results from integrated approach to blight
A new project to help growers adopt a more integrated approach to late blight control is producing some encouraging findings after just one year. As a result, varietal resistance could have a much bigger bearing on fungicide strategies within a couple of seasons, according to Ruairidh Bain from the Scottish Agricultural College (SAC).  More ...


Seed store management
It is important to manage your seed storage thoughtfully as preserving quality through to planting can yield major benefits in subsequent crops, especially in terms of disease control.  More ...


Efficiency of CIPC in box stores
Work is being done to optimise chlorpropham (CIPC) use in box stores. Earlier investigations in bulk stores showed that savings of up to 50% were possible and researchers are seeking to replicate these results as far as possible.  More ...


The importance of soil and water
Making the most of soil and water is of vital importance to growers, according to AHDB Potatoes adviser Chris Steele.  More ...


Working together to protect water rights
Many potato growers are concerned about the future of currently available water resources. Many British growers already find rainfall insufficient to satisfy water requirements for growing high quality fruit and vegetables and make up the shortfall using irrigation. In times of water shortage, farmers are hit hard.  More ...


Challenges imposed by the Water Framework Directive
The Environment Agency is helping people meet the challenges posed by the Water Framework Directive. The objective is to manage the catchment in an holistic way, improving the ecological status of the water and reducing pollutants, according to Dave Freeman, principal officer of the Water Framework Directive for the Environment Agency.  More ...


Government policies – threats or opportunities? 
According to Tim Pratt from Farm Energy Centre, there are clear incentives for growers to improve their energy efficiency and options such as the Carbon Trust may help by offering interest-free loans of up to £20,000 for investments such as improving insulation in potato stores.  More ...


Carbon Trust interest free loans for farmers
  More ...


PCL Seed rate guides
With early planting already begun and the main season approaching, now is the time to think about seed requirements and planting densities.  More ...


Food and Environment Research Agency (Fera) and the Scottish Government
would like to remind all potato growers/merchants/buyers/packers and processors of the requirement for identification of ware potatoes being marketed within the EU (including movements within the UK). Your AHDB Potatoes registration number must be clearly marked on packaging, or, for loose loaded potatoes, on the vehicle transporting the potatoes, at all times. Failure to display this number may lead to the consignment being returned or destroyed. Please contact Sue Saunders on 02476 47 8606 or email for further guidance on the appropriate registration number to use.

Note: The use of the BPC number is still valid but letters BPC should be changed to AHDB Potatoes when new bags are printed.


Potato farms – making them a safer place to work
The latest and updated version of the AHDB Potatoes Safe Potato Operations DVD is available for levy payers on the AHDB Potatoes website

To request a copy please email, providing a phone number, postcode and AHDB Potatoes Registration Number, or call 02476 478788 and leave a voicemail stating the details requested above and state the item you require.

Produced for the farm team involved with in-field and in-store potato grading, with the support from the National Farmers Union (NFU), Frozen & Chilled Potato Processors Association (FCPPA), Grimme UK and Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the DVD integrates the importance of health and safety with the correct use of farm equipment.


Diary dates:
March 16-17 2010: AHDB Potatoes Store Managers’ Course A few places remain on our annual two day training course on store management that will be held at Boroughbridge in Yorkshire. ISO 9001, BASIS and NRoSO accreditation. Certificate supplied on successful completion of the course. Please call Kate Balloch at Sutton Bridge on 01406 359418 to request a booking form and full details

May 26, 2010: West Midlands Potato Day

June 2010: South East Potato Day (date to be announced)

June 22-24, 2010: International Potato Processing & Storage Convention (To be held at the Roxburghe Hotel, Edinburgh.

July 6, 2010: East Midlands Potato Day

July 20, 2010: North of England Potato Day

July 22, 27 and 28, 2010: Potatoes in Partnership at Sauchenloan, Gilchorn and Luffness (order to be confirmed)

August 12, 2010: Potatoes in Practice Field-based event in Dundee

September 2, 2010: Sutton Bridge Storage Research Day (Provisional date)

October 26, 2010: Seed Industry Event Conference at Crieff Hydro

Autumn 2010: Herefordshire Potato Storage Seminar A series of regional agronomy events is also planned, details of these and AHDB Potatoes events above will be available at

March 4, 2010: Irrigation – water’s role in food security (organised by UKIA) .  More ...

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