Potato production in China offers many opportunities for Dutch potato production technology. Today, China is the biggest potato producer in the world. It produces 65 million metric tonnes of potatoes. It grows 22% of the global potato production on 26% of the world’s potato production land. China’s domestic demand for potato products is likely to keep growing for many years ahead.
The R&D activities in this PPS are focussed on the following topics:
- Seed potato quality, breeding technology, production and certification.
High quality seed is a prerequisite to achieve high yields. High quality seed is free from any (seed borne and surface borne) diseases and is in the right physiological condition at planting time. The Sino-Dutch Potato Innovations project promotes increased usage of good seed as such leads to sustainable high yield levels and a high recovery on the propagation material and thus contributes to Good Agricultural Practices. Better seed will often give rise to substantial yield increases.
- Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) potato cultivation (water use, crop protection, weed control, fertilizers, etc.).In the current situation there is a gap between the demand from buyers of potatoes and production of potatoes by farmers; the challenge for the complete potato chain is to significantly improve on the production side. Modernization of potato growing is necessary to meet this economically interesting challenge by the application of best practices for crop management. Special attention is needed for the effective control of Phytophthora infestans (late blight control).
- Machinery, equipment and harvesting technology. Modern equipment for soil tillage, planting, ridging, plant protection, weed control and harvesting are important tools for a successful potato crop. Preferably demonstration farms are set up at different locations in Heilongjiang.
- Storage technology. Potatoes have to be stored for quit a long time to meet the needs of the market. Good storage facilities and expertise about the storage process are crucial for good results. Storage facilities and knowledge about storing potatoes can and should improve substantially. In addition, HAAS is interested in potato processing.
- Demonstration & know how transfer (training of extension and industry people
at several levels). Parties involved in the project are convinced that knowledge transfer to advisors and farmers is a crucial point in the development of a successful and sustainable potato sector. Demonstration of best practices and training of people in the sector on all the relevant crop issues is the best way forward on this point.
First Workshop in Harbin
From 22 - 24 July, 2015, a first workshop on sustainable potato production and processing in China was held. A second workshop will be held during 2016 in Zhangjiakou (about 150 km from Beijing) in China. HAAS, Wageningen UR, SAITIP, NAFTC, Snow Valley / Aviko and the local science park, the program will organize the workshop.