A series of trials is taking place on potato farms to look at effective alternatives for banned chemicals such as diquat and CIPC.
Organised by levy body AHDB as part of its Strategic Potato Farm Network, the trials are being staged on five UK farms including one in Perthshire.
“We are very aware of the challenges that the continual loss of chemistry poses,” said AHDB senior knowledge exchange manager Claire Hodge.
“The industry has lost both diquat for burndown, and CIPC for storage, in quick succession, and this trend is likely to continue.
“Our strategic farms are ideally placed to help growers find alternatives as they can trial different practices in a commercial environment and make sure the results are swiftly shared with growers.”
Trials looking at alternatives to diquat, including both alternative chemical and mechanical methods, are being run in conjunction with the James Hutton Institute.
Trials into alternatives to CIPC include experimenting with different varieties to see which are less prone to sprouting, while still being commercially viable.