Since 2022, Restrain is available in the United States and Canada as a natural sprout inhibitor for potatoes, and was even granted an organic label in Canada, the company reports. In order to further inform and develop this market locally, Restrain recently employed Emily Merk as sales manager North America.
After harvest, potatoes remain in storage for months before being distributed to sales and processing locations. During that time, the potatoes can develop sprouts that affect the quality and make these crops unsuitable for sale and processing. ‘To prevent these losses, we introduce Restrain in the market’, Merk explains. ‘Restrain is a natural sprout inhibitor based on the natural gas ethylene. By introducing and continuously maintaining an extremely low concentration of ethylene gas in their storage locations, growers prevent their crops from sprouting. The Restrain method is already used in 40 countries worldwide as a sprout inhibitor for potatoes, and as a seed potato accumulator’, Merk elaborates. She points out that Restrain is an economical alternative to CIPC, with a 40 times lower carbon footprint and being 100 precent residue-free. ‘There is no waiting time needed before the potatoes can be delivered to the client, so it makes planning for processing crops very flexible’, she emphasizes.
‘For seed potatoes we also see positive results from using ethylene, because it gives more creamers. A special storage protocol combined with ethylene for 90 days or longer, blocks the apical dominance. As a result, there will be about 40 percent more stems and extra yields with 10-30 percent more tubers, subject to variety’, Merk adds. ●
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