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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Location: Sugarbeet and Potato Research

2011 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
To cooperate with potato breeders, producers, and processors to improve post harvest potato quality by reducing storage and processing losses. A major portion of this effort involves the evaluation of storage and processing characteristics of promising new varieties and advanced germplasm developed and submitted by U.S. potato breeding programs. Identify new genotypes with the ability to process directly from a storage temperature of less than 7 degree C. Identify optimum storage conditions for new cold-sweetening resistant germplasm. Identify new germplasm exhibiting enhanced vitamin C content. The specific objectives are: Objective 1: Determine the effects of postharvest storage on process quality and nutritional composition of advanced breeding lines in collaboration with public potato breeding programs. Sub-objective 1.1: Determine storage and processing characteristics of advanced breeding lines. Sub-objective 1.2: Screen advanced potato breeding lines for cold storage potential. Objective 2: Determine the total antioxidant and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) contents of advanced breeding clones at harvest and during temperature-controlled storage.

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
This research project is a service project that provides standardized storage, processing and analysis of advanced breeding clones submitted by public potato breeding programs. All protocols, storage conditions, and analytical methods used have been standardized in accordance with current industry practices and are therefore invariant. Specific approaches include: 1) storage, processing and evaluation of new breeding lines, 2) determine cold storage potential of selected clones and cultivars, and 3) determine total antioxidant and vitamin C contents of advanced breeding clones at harvest and during storage.

3. Progress Report
Variations in potato process product quality for chips and fries due to disease and sugar accumulation result in major storage losses costing producers and processors hundreds of millions of dollars annually. In continuation of our program to evaluate the storage and processing characteristics of promising new potato clones, cooperative research has been expanded to include public potato breeding programs at eleven universities (ND, MN, MI, OH, NB, WI, ID, MA, NY, TX and CO) and two USDA, ARS programs. In the past year, over 16,500 individual quality evaluations were performed on elite potato lines following storage under defined conditions. This direct selection process will speed the introduction of new potato cultivars with superior processing characteristics. A vitamin C analytical protocol has been established with 120 advanced clones and a long term storage study.

4. Accomplishments
1. Potato post-harvest quality evaluations and release of new potato cultivar. Acceptable processing quality after storage is an essential attribute of a successful potato variety. The standardized evaluation procedures developed and used by scientists at the ARS Potato Research Worksite in East Grand Forks, MN have been an important component of the overall process of evaluation and release of new cultivars by federal and state cooperators nationwide. In support of federal and non-federal public breeding/screening programs, research conducted at this location has analyzed between 14,000 and 16,500 advanced breeding lines for storage/processing quality annually. In collaboration with plant breeders nationwide, research conducted by the ARS scientists at the Potato Research Worksite, East Grand Forks, MN has contributed to the release of many promising potato varieties. These varieties offer significant benefits to both producers and processors and should be widely adopted by the potato industry.

Last Modified: 06/27/2017
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