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The British Potato Show - helping growers be better at potatoes

Potato cyst nematodes and wireworm are amongst the greatest challenges facing growers. Without better control of both, the economic viability of potato production is under threat, but with fewer crop protection solutions to this dilemma finding a way to protect yields and quality is proving difficult.

PCN and wireworm are just two of the research areas that will be of interest to growers. Trials with a phosphate release product, a new mode of action for late blight control and a new aphicide featuring translaminar movement. Trials with both have so far been positive.

As the leading potato advice, technology and supply business, trials are essential to supporting the Agrii proposition and demonstrating our value to growers. Trials are just as essential to the future of the industry.

Through our trials, many of which have been incorporated into The Potato Partnership, we have shown that there is cause for optimism. We have shown that half-rate Nemathorin (fosthiazate) in sequence with Velum Prime (fluopyram) can deliver yield protection close to that of full-rate Nemathorin as part of an IPM approach. Similarly, work investigating lambda-cyhalothrin granules at planting for wireworm control has shown benefit and we are hopeful that the active substance will receive approval in time for the 2024 season.

Our trials investigating the role of potassium-phosphonate as both a plant elicitor and a new mode of action for late blight control have been encouraging, but also confounding. We have seen excellent results, just not with all product formulations. This is perhaps one of the most evident demonstrations of value we could hope to see from trials.

The spread of blight strains with reduced sensitivity to fungicides is a constant threat. As an industry we are heavily reliant on fungicides in the CAA group, especially, mandipropamid, benthiavalicarb and dimethomorph. The Fight Against Blight (FAB) programme run by the James Hutton Institute is essential to identifying any changes in sensitivity that might indicate the need to adapt practices. We are proud to support this initiative, but it’s future is by no means secure.

For 2024, we will expand the late blight trials to better integrate all forms of control, such as plant elicitors and biological. The intention of which is to showcase the potential for IPM to deliver a programme with a low environmental impact quotient (EIQ) value.

The RHIZA team will be on hand to demonstrate how live data from soil and moisture probes can be used to inform irrigation scheduling and disease monitoring (late blight) in potatoes and other vegetables.

Visit Agrii on stand AAH. There will be results briefings at 11.45am on both days.

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