AHDB looks for new Scottish potato demo farm

The AHDB is looking for a Scottish potato grower to host its first demo farm north of the border, with the aim of sharing new ideas in spud growing.

“The SPot [Strategic Potato] Farm is a unique concept that improves the links between evidence-based science and practical activity on-farm,” says project lead and AHDB Potatoes’ technical executive, Claire Hodge.

“We’re seeking an innovative grower to work with us to challenge conventional working practices and, using proven research, demonstrate how potato growers can benefit from applying beneficial adjustments to commercial growing systems.”

The joint AHDB and Scottish government-funded project, worth £150,000, will run for three growing seasons, finishing in late 2019.

See also: Invest in potato storage now to secure bright future

“Not only are we seeking a ware or seed grower, we’re also inviting forward-thinking farmers to join the steering group and help shape this project for the Scottish industry,” adds Miss Hodge.

“Our aim is to uncover the research and ensure growers can use the results confidently from SPot Scotland to make real and beneficial changes to their businesses.”

Topics that could be tackled include challenging cultivations and soil management practices, looking at crop nutrition, varieties and different seed rates. Use of precision techniques and improving water management are also options.

It follows the success of the first SPot Farm in Shropshire, hosted by James Daws. He has investigated how going shallower with cultivations can halve costs. 


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