Potato Talks

The Potato Talks, located on the Expo Hall stage, is a cultivator of ideas and inspiration. During the show the Potato Talks is the center of activity featuring non-stop engaging discussions and entertainment - all centered around potatoes and potato production.

potato talks SCHEDULE:

Tuesday, January 14
Mirage Event Center, Expo Stage


Chloropicrin Soil Fumigation and Soil Health in Potato Production Systems

There are many long-held assumptions regarding soil fumigation such as 1) Soil fumigation sterilizes the soil, and 2) Once a farmer starts soil fumigation, the practice cannot be stopped. New research into disease suppression and soil health following chloropicrin soil fumigation is demonstrating these ideas to be outdated. This seminar will update the potato community on new information related to chloropicrin soil fumigation in potato production by examining disease suppression, tuber yield and quality improvement potential, and the soil health benefits following chloropicrin soil fumigation.

Chad Hutchinson, Ph.D., Director of Research, TriEst Ag Group


Potassium Requirements and Timing for Higher Potato Yields

Potassium is the most abundant nutrient in potato plants. It plays an important role in many plant functions, some of which are critical for tuber quality and marketability such as tuber size and specific gravity, furthermore, adequate K helps prevent costly tuber quality issues such as bruising and poor storage quality.

Technology in the form of seed quality, disease prevention and irrigation have increased yield potential dramatically in the last 10-15 years, higher yielding potatoes require a greater volume of potassium than many growers currently utilize. Therefore, growers and agronomists need to address the volume of potassium and better understand the timing of potassium uptake during critical periods of growth. It is important to consider soil type, water quality, form of potassium, application method and application timing to maximize the return on all nutrient investment, including potassium.

Peter Aleman, President, Bio-Gro, Inc.


APRE Research Program Update: What the Science Says About Potatoes and Physical Performance & Potatoes in Health and Disease

The Alliance for Potato Research and Education (APRE) research program has evolved greatly over the past four years—from funding three to 30 studies that aim to advance the scientific understanding of the role potatoes play in promoting health. Recent publications highlight new benefits for potatoes, specifically related to sports performance and the link between potato resistant starch content (a type of indigestible carbohydrate that exists naturally in potatoes but is also created based on cooking preparation) and health outcomes. Additionally, studies currently under investigation are expected to add to the growing body of research around the role of potatoes on cardiometabolic health, healthy dietary patterns and healthy lifestyles.

Mitch Kanter, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, Alliance for Potato Research and Education


Boosting Productivity and Profitability Using Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers

Enhanced-efficiency fertilizers (EEF) are defined as products that reduce nutrient losses to the environment and increase nutrient availability for the crop. Enhanced-efficiency nitrogen fertilizers may be valuable tools to help potato growers meet the challenges of managing nitrogen, a critical factor in producing high yields of quality potatoes. Enhanced-efficiency materials have different properties and modes of action to meet different purposes. Each mode of action serves a specific purpose. This presentation will review different types of EEFs, specific benefits, advantages or disadvantages versus a conventional N source, how nitrogen may be lost and how EEF’s protect against loss.

Alan Blaylock, Ph.D., CPSSc, Senior Agronomist, Nutrien Ltd.


Imagery and Variable Rate Application: How Imagery Analytics is Advancing Nutrient Management

New advances in aerial imagery and other remote sensing technologies is making it possible to manage nutrient applications in new and exciting ways. For the first time, potato growers are able to access accurate in-season data, which can provide accurate nutrient management zone creation for variable rate nitrogen application as well. In this presentation, Chad Scebold will discuss the challenges and opportunities in using imagery technology to manage in season applications and reduce input costs. He will share how the technology works and how traditional normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) is being replaced by chlorophyll-based analytics models. Then, he’ll provide real world examples of how the technology is being used to advance nutrient management practices and increase ROI.

Chad Scebold, Director of Sales and Strategic Accounts, Ceres Imaging


Insights Into Metam Sodium Movement in Different Soil Types Across the U.S.

As a follow-up to our 2019 presentation where we shared misconception-breaking insights into the post-application behavior of the soil fumigant metam sodium, Kyle Coleman will literally dig deeper in their field studies.

Now with more than 20,000 sample readings in the database, he can share insights into how to make the most effective application of metam sodium in a variety of different soil types. Based on sampling done in eight states, he will share post-application movement patterns observed from moist, loamy soil in Washington state to dry, sandy soil in Florida and others in between.

After studying metam sodium movement in soil at each of more than 100 separate locations, every single cooperator in the studies did something a little different the next time they applied the product. He will share some of their findings and tips for creating even greater efficiency in metam sodium use.

Kyle Coleman, Director of Marketing and Commercial Development, NovaSource North America


It All Starts with the Seed, Changes Coming to Seed Certification Programs

New diseases and symptomless viruses are hampering the effectiveness of potato seed certification programs to visually assess the crop and ensure disease incidence remains below threshold limits. New diagnostics and crop evaluation methodologies are available, but will the U.S. potato industry allow seed certification to evolve so that the programs can continue to provide a quality product at a reasonable cost? Join the conversation to learn what new tools are available and how they can be implemented. Tight margins will demand little to no additional costs, but this will only be achieved if the potato industry initiates and sanctions significant changes in seed certification operations.

A.J. Bussan, Ph.D., Director of Agronomy and Quality, RPE Spuds
Stewart Gray, Professor, Plant Pathology and Plant Microbe-Biology, Cornell University and Research Plant Pathology, USDA-ARS

Don Sklarczyk, COO, Sklarczyk Seed Farm LLC


A Potato Association of America (PAA) Research Discussion: Are Hybrid Potatoes in Your Future and Identifying Herbicide Injury in Potato
Paul Bethke, Research Plant Physiologist, USDA-ARS
Shelley Jansky, Research Geneticist, USDA-ARS
Mark Pavek, Potato Specialist and Professor, Washington State University

Andy Robinson, Extension Potato Agronomist and Associate Professor, North Dakota State University / University of Minnesota

Wednesday, January 15


Connected Crop Management for Potatoes

Today’s tech-savvy farming operations know that irrigation of commodity crops like potatoes is too important to leave to chance. They acquire data from various sources, and something meant to make farm management easier becomes another problem.

But integrating data isn’t the only challenge. You need tools to help you interpret that data and apply it precisely, to decrease inputs and increase profitability. Of course, with potatoes, yields aren’t always the most important factor – you’re seeking perfection. That kind of management requires a precision solution, one that helps you navigate every challenge of the growing season, integrating the following solutions: Forecast & Plan; Monitor & Control; Optimize & Apply; and Insights & Analysis.

Advanced technology solutions with that level of integration on the pivot can help make sure each individual plant receives the right amount of water at the right time, resulting in the perfect potatoes your buyers demand.

John Campbell, National Accounts Manager, Valley Irrigation, a Valmont Company

Trevor Mecham, Vice President of Global Technology Strategy - Irrigation, Valley Irrigation, a Valmont Company


UAN/Calcium Solution: An Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizer for Potato Production and Tuber Quality

Balanced nutrition is the key to optimize crop production and produce quality potato plants and tubers. Nitrogen and calcium are two of the most important fertilizer nutrients needed to meet this objective. Based on crop growth constraints (row closure) and growth stage needs (tuber bulking), a liquid fertigation source will be required to spoon feed both the potato plants and tubers. UCAN was developed to address this issue. It contains 17% nitrogen with 49% in the nitrate nitrogen form and 51% in the ammonium and urea form which is a similar ratio for ammonium nitrate. UCAN also contains 17.2% water-soluble calcium for both potato plant use and mitigation of ammonia volatilization loss from urea. Lastly, it has been classified by regulatory agencies as an enhanced efficiency fertilizer for its properties to reduce nitrogen loss to the environment.

Bill Easterwood, Ph.D., Director, Agronomic Services, Yara North America


Applying Latest Technologies to Transform the Potato Industry

The potato industry has been operating in the traditional manner for a long time. There have been many innovative technologies developed in the recent years that would transform the operational mechanics of the industry in various segments. Such technologies include Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Sensors (IoT), Block Chain, Hyper Spectral Imaging, Drones and Satellite Imaging, Cloud Computing, Mobile Apps, Precision Ag, and Analytics etc. These technologies can be applied to optimize and improve various segments of the potato industry such as variety selection, green house seed production, seed certification, farm production, quality assurance, storage, transportation, sales, traceability, food safety compliance etc. These technologies coupled with automation has the potential to address the increasing labor costs while maintaining a competitive advantage. We have built a comprehensive, integrated suite of solutions to benefit the potato industry.

Madhu Jamallamudi, Founder, Agrometrics


Potato Irrigation Scheduling by Using Satellite Imagery

With the increase of use of satellite imagery in potato production, most of the satellite imagery is used for field scouting, such as disease detection, water stress detection, and yield estimation. However, due to the limitation of current technology, real-time satellite imageries are not available. And, the use of imagery for irrigation scheduling for potato does is widely used. What if growers can use satellite imageries to help on irrigation scheduling even though the imagery is from the earlier in the growing season? This presentation will show you the exploration results of using satellite imagery to adjust the past soil water depletion (ET) to facilitate the forecast of irrigation scheduling.

James Han, Ph.D., Data Scientist, Lindsay Corporation


Sustainable Management of the Soil Disease Complex in Potato with Root2Success

Root2Success it a holistic approach to improve and sustain soil health with the integration of all cultural practices (crop rotation, cover and catch crops), water and nutrient management, adoption of tolerant potato varieties and the use of biological and chemical based crop protection products. Novel research findings with the use of Emesto, Serenade and Velum from Europe and North America will illustrate the benefits of the Root2Success concept to all partners of the potato value chain.

Albert Schirring, Global Crop Manager Potatoes, Bayer AG, Crop Science Division


A Single Software Platform to Boost Your Operation's Efficiency

With Agrian's crop records system users have the ability to capture a variety of different record types in a standard format including planting, crop protection, nutrient, land preparation, harvest, and a catch-all bucket in the form of 'other.' These data attributes create a comprehensive picture of the farming practices performed throughout the season and will help you better evaluate the profitability on a field by field basis using an interactive dashboard tool.

Nish Majarian, CEO, Agrian Inc.


How Are Potato Companies Integrating Sustainability Thinking Into Their Business Models?

Interest is building in company-led initiatives to benchmark, measure and assess sustainability, including climate performance. With growing consumer interest and the clock ticking on global climate targets, food and agriculture companies are under ever increasing pressure to take more comprehensive and immediate action. This session will focus on how companies engage throughout the supply chain to drive sustainability and address potato “hot spots” such as greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. We’ll look at what is driving value chain change and how business is working to deliver on sustainability targets. This includes opportunities for pre-competitive collaboration drawing upon many years of experience implementing the Potato Sustainability Alliance in both the processed and fresh sectors together with growers.

Tammy McElroy, Senior Director of Sustainability, Sysco Corporation

John MacQuarrie, Director of Environmental Sustainability, Cavendish Farms

Vernon Cambell, Owner and Operator, Mull Na Beinne Farms Ltd.

Sanford Gleddie, Vice President of Agriculture and Global Business Development, The Little Potato Company


Potatoes and Microbes: A Pathway to Productivity, Soil Health, and Sustainability

What if you could improve the health of your soil, increase the efficiency and profitability of your potato production, and promote sustainability on your farm, all at the same time?

New innovative microbial technologies have been developed that are already demonstrating significant impacts to all three initiatives and are providing real value to growers today. Early adopters of microbial technologies are realizing benefits in agronomic performance as well as healthier and more resilient soils. Additionally, microbes facilitate carbon sequestration depositing rich banks of organic matter to the benefit of both the soil and crop. Recent breakthroughs in strain selection, enhanced microbial viability, and deployment methods are enabling growers to realize the benefits of these products without changing their potato production practices.

Join us in exploring the untapped potential of beneficial microbes and how they can positively contribute to your potato production.

Alex Fotsch, Vice President of Agricultural Operations, Locus Agricultural Solutions