Breeding companies combine strengths for hybrid breeding in starch potato production
Published: May 20, 2021
Solynta and Averis recently announced they will be working together on the hybrid breeding of starch potato varieties.
In their joint press release, hybrid potato breeding company Solynta and Averis Seeds B.V., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Royal Avebe, mentioned that hybrid breeding facilitates significantly faster development of new sustainable potato varieties compared to conventional breeding. Hybrid breeding is an important accelerator for making starch potato cultivation more sustainable because it allows for a faster response to challenges such as changing weather conditions and potato diseases that constantly adapt to resistances, the companies stated. They also point out growing better varieties faster reduces the need for crop protection products, and yields can be increased while using fertilizers more effectively.
Better control of the progress of varietal properties
Solynta has been working on obtaining Hybrid True Potato Seed for over twelve years. This technical revolution enables faster breeding and makes it possible to better control the progress of varietal properties. Naturally occurring properties such as resistance to drought, pests and diseases can be quickly introgressed. The result is a significantly shorter development process and faster progress with the properties that are of value to Avebe’s growers. ‘This collaboration brings together Averis’ specific knowledge of properties and genetics for starch potato cultivation with Solynta’s hybrid breeding platform, creating a continuous stream of ever-improving varieties for Avebe’s growers’, explains Edwin van der Vossen, Director Research & Development at Solynta.
Continuous development of new opportunities and applications
Johan Hopman, Breeding & Research Manager at Averis, is also pleased with the collaboration: ‘Now that we can see the successful results of hybrid breeding, the time has come to use this technique for breeding starch potato varieties as well’, he says, illustrating the logic behind the combination of strengths of the two breeding companies. Avebe indicates to work continuously on developing new opportunities and applications based on starch potatoes and is focused on sustainable continuity. The starch potatoes of the 2,300 arable farmers in their cooperative are processed into high-grade ingredients based on potato starch and protein, and they add value to food products but also to industrial applications worldwide.