Corona is forcing the potato trading houses to think about a different set-up of the traditional variety shows this year. A number of companies opt for an event online, others have decided to postpone the shows for a year. In this series on Akkerwijzer, the trading houses talk about their showpieces and challenges. Today in Part 10: Plantera. “A potato must be sustainably produced and tasteful.”
The world is changing: crop protection products, fertilizers and food processing are increasingly fading into the background, says Plantera sales manager Gerard Bovée. “Products must be sustainably produced and tasteful, so that the positive distinction can be experienced in unprocessed form. We respond to this with our breeding program. Short lines, sustainability and continuity are of paramount importance. Turnover and market share are subordinate to these objectives. ”
Resistances and tolerances
Bovée states that potato varieties must have broad resistance in the near future. Potato fatigue resistance, virus resistance, but also good truth and Phytophthora resistance are essential production traits for future varieties, he says. Plantera is responding to this with the varieties Efera, Lucera and Titanium, of which a commercial volume is available in seed potatoes.
The varieties can do with a limited amount of seed potatoes and fertilizer, with a competitive yield, says Bovée. An alternative to Fontane, Efera is a mid-early to mid-late variety, with good taste and presentation, he says. “The variety is suitable as a table potato and for processing into chips. Due to its beautiful skin and limited susceptibility to scab, a high percentage can be supplied. The variety is easy to grow and store. ”
Lucera (photo) is a waxy potato with a nice skin and a high yield for retail and peeling. The variety has a specific waxy flavor, said the sales manager. “The high number of tubers makes the potato suitable for baby cultivation. The storage characteristics are good and for that reason the Lucera is available from our own growing area almost all year round. ”
Titanium is a late oval table potato that is suitable for processing into chips and for peeling. Due to its taste, cultivation characteristics and storability, the variety can be sold over a longer period of the year, says Bovée. “The high level of nematode resistance makes the variety valuable within the crop plan. The variety is low-input and high-output and a good alternative to the risky variety Agria. ”
Good peel presentation, resistances, dual purpose, low input, processing and yield are recurring questions, says Bovée. It is not feasible to respond to this immediately, he says. “As a breeding company it is important to develop a vision in this area and to implement it. We do breeding for the demand of 2030 and not for today’s demand. ” Another important aspect is that the producers in the chain maintain an income. “Preventing setbacks in cultivation by supplying good quality varieties, healthy seed potatoes and good supervision is therefore essential.”