Different irrigation techniques, such as the drip technology used in the fruit industry, could help potato growers adjust to stricter use and extraction licensing pressures, KG Fruits’ Tom Deards believes.

In the soft fruit industry drip irrigation has allowed KG Fruits to raise the standard of crops grown in terms of both quality and quantity.

“We use drip irrigation with mulch to reduce evaporation losses.

It allows for effective fertigation, as all feeding is continually dosed, avoids chemical wash-off and cuts leaf and fruit diseases.”

Drip irrigation will make the adoption of mandatory control easier in the future, Mr Deards says, as well as ensuring the most effective use of water resources, reducing the environmental impacts of irrigation and improving the public perception of the industry.