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Schaap Holland: Breeding in the fast lane of a changing potato world

November 03, 2023

‘In a rapidly changing world consumers awareness of the origin of their food is growing. Ware potato growers, packers and processing industries, are looking for new varieties due to decreasing availability of crop protection products, climate changes and higher efficiency demands. To define a goal for a potato breeder to meet these ‘demands’ and transform all this into a new potato variety is quite a challenge to say the least’, experiences Schaap Holland.

‘For the near future we expect new so called “robust” varieties to be added to our variety portfolio. This will take time and can hardly keep up with mentioned rapidly changes. Changing times can however also offer chances for already existing varieties. Let’s talk VALENCIA. As the introduction of this French fry variety has not been easy because at time of introduction the well established varieties in the processing segment did perform equal. In practise we are creatures of habit. Why choose for something new, performing the same as we are used to?’, explains Schaap Holland.

Look at desires seed producers

‘These days it’s important to not forget seed producers and look at their desires. They face the same challenges as their colleague ware growers in growing practise. Extreme weather patterns ask e.g. for less susceptibility to bacteria. VALENCIA does not show any problems with bacteria where established varieties show sometimes their disappointments. VALENCIA does show no disappointments in post control tests regarding virus. Primary infections in the field by aphids this year did effect a lot of varieties, including some of the well established varieties.’

Perfect frying quality

‘The stability of results are for many seed growers a reason to choose for a variety like VALENCIA. This, and also the perfect frying qualities are also seen by the processing industry. More and more candidates are coming forward to include VALENCIA in their programs.’
‘Be welcome in November, we are happy to meet and tell you more!’ ●

Potato Variety Days 2023 e-book

In November, companies participating in the Potato Variety Days put the spotlight on their potato varieties of the future. Learn all the ins and outs of this year’s event in our special e-book, including need-to-know information and an up-to-date list of participating companies to help you plan your visit. Download your own e-book with the full programme here.


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