27 February 1998

New spuds and beets now listed

THREE new maincrop potato varieties and five new sugar beets have won provisional approval on NIABs Recommended Lists for 1999.

Caesar, from breeder ZPC, has general recommendation for pre-packing and ware uses. Midas from PBIC and Sunbeam from RJ Cherry are included as specialist varieties for crisping/mashing and crisping respectively.

A decision on specialist salad variety Alex from Danish breeder Kartoffenfond (UK agent Nickerson) was deferred pending further cooking quality trials. First early variety Accent is now considered outclassed.

Roscor and Redstar were considered, but not recommended. Redstar showed no significant improvement over current processing and ware varieties and Roscor was left out due to disease susceptibility, says NIABs Simon Kerr

The new sugar beets are Anthem, Chorus, Clarissa, Duke and Swift. Jackpot has been moved from provisional to full recommendation for general use.

Anthem and Chorus from Nickerson Seeds and Clarissa from English Sugar Beet Seed Company gave high yields, with above average sugar content and below average impurities, says NIAB.

Duke, from Delitzsch, produced high root and sugar yields, with below average sugar content and very low juice impurities. Swift, from Advanta Seeds, gave high yields with average sugar content and below average juice impurities.

Seven other candidates were considered but not added, most failing to show higher total sugar yield. Aztec, Saxon, Scarlett and Verity have all been removed from the list.

Further details of varieties appear in NIABs sugar beet and potato handbooks, which will be available to members from Apr 23. Non-members can purchase the booklets from NIAB (01223-342344) at £10 each, after June 4th.

NIABS NEW ROOTS

&#8226 Potato winners: Caesar, Midas, Sunbeam.

&#8226 Sugar beet winners: Anthem, Chorus, Clarissa, Duke, Swift.

NIABS NEW ROOTS

&#8226 Potato winners: Caesar, Midas, Sunbeam.

&#8226 Sugar beet winners: Anthem, Chorus, Clarissa, Duke, Swift.