Skip to navigation Skip to content

Potatoes in Practice: Britain’s largest technical potato field event is coming up

PiP is organised and hosted by the James Hutton Institute (c) James Hutton Inst
"It’s a very wide-ranging field day and there’s something there for everybody, from agronomists to students to researchers and farmers alike. I’d encourage everybody in the industry to attend.

With up to 1000 industry visitors expected, Potatoes in Practice (PiP) is the UK’s largest technical field event for the potato industry. It provides key topical technical content to hundreds of growers and industry ‘influencers’ and this year it will be held on Thursday 13th August, at the James Hutton Institute’s Balruddery Farm, Invergowrie, near Dundee, DD2 5LJ.

PiP is organised and hosted by the James Hutton Institute, sponsored by AHDB Potatoes and supported by Potato Review magazine.

Also held in association with Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) and Agrii, PiP offers the anticipated high-standard mix of science, technology and practical advice. The packed one-day programme takes the form of agronomy and variety trial plots with guided tours, a technical seminar programme, research and trade stands, static and working machinery displays.

Nearly 900 industry visitors travelled from near and far to the event in 2014, with increasing numbers of visitors coming from overseas to see the advances the GB potato industry is making. Growers, seed breeders, exporters, plant health officials, machinery companies, trade and marketing organisations all gather at PiP, making it a ‘must-attend’ event in the technical calendar.

The James Hutton Institute will be showing the second AHDB Potatoes-sponsored soil pit demonstration, examining the impacts on soil and crop associated with the cultivation of wet soil and of soil at optimal water content. This soil pit will show several features, revealing outcomes from recent research by NIAB-CUF, funded by AHDB Potatoes, demonstrating the benefits of delaying primary cultivation. In this demonstration, soil was cultivated at two different water contents - one drier and one wetter than the plastic limit. Differences in the extent and nature of aggregates of clods will be examined.

As part of the AHDB Potatoes-funded platforms to test and demonstrate sustainable soil management, the James Hutton Institute will be using the Balruddery Centre for Sustainable Cropping to examine whether differences in management change soil aggregation.

Further event trials and demos will look at foliar and crop nutrition, high-grade seed production, seed tuber treatments and bio-controls. Plus, growers can take a look at all the current and new varieties available and discuss their requirements with the breeders.

Now a regular feature, live machinery demos will be held again this year. Euan Caldwell, James Hutton Institute Farm Manager, said: “We’ll see Agricar working a Grimme BF200 Bedforma and a mounted Norsdon 1502 pneumatic fertiliser applicator. George Moate will be demonstrating the Tillerstar. Grimme (UK) will demonstrate their BFL-series BedForma and Grimme CS150 multiweb de-stoner, and both machines will be guided by Soil Essentials RTK GPS guidance system. Also RGS Forfar will be demonstrating a Scanstone windrower and Dewulf self-propelled harvester. There will be a lot to see, all working live on the site. Machinery demos are scheduled to run twice, so there’ll be an opportunity for all visitors to see them.”

The PiP seminar programme forms a key part of the technical knowledge exchange with growers, with hot topics being discussed this year.The first seminar will look at two recent AHDB Potatoes-sponsored research projects which have produced new practical recommendations for both early and late-season irrigation. NIAB-CUF will talk about using irrigation to control common scab in more resistant varieties, higher allowable deficits and a later start to irrigation.

The potato is one of the crops studied intensively at the James Hutton Institute and their potato scientists work closely across different disciplines, spanning genetics, breeding, pathology, physiology, agronomy as well as others, and interact with other potato scientists across the globe. A ‘Pecha Kucha’ talk by Dr Glenn Bryan will describe how the funding they receive is being used to deliver knowledge of the potato genome, genetics and stress responses.

Dr Phil Burgess, AHDB Potatoes’ head of knowledge transfer and communications, said: “Potatoes in Practice offers fresh content each year and gives growers and industry an excellent chance to find out about the latest government, AHDB and industry-supported initiatives. There will be seasonal advice from experts in their field on crop nutrition, pests and disease issues, as well as the latest products and equipment on the trade stand exhibits and machinery displays.

"This event provides growers and wider industry with the latest science and technical advice, with nearly 900 attendees last year. It’s a very wide-ranging field day and there’s something there for everybody, from agronomists to students to researchers and farmers alike. I’d encourage everybody in the industry to attend."

Notes to editors:

AHDB Potatoes is a division of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB). AHDB is a UK-wide Non-Departmental Public Body sponsored by Defra and primarily funded by farmers, growers and others in the supply chain through statutory levies. It supports the meat and livestock industries (beef, sheep and pigs) in England, the horticulture, dairy and potatoes industries in Great Britain, and the cereals and oilseeds industry in the UK. AHDB Potatoes was formerly known as Potato Council.

Press and media enquiries: 

Bernardo Rodriguez-Salcedo, Media Manager, Tel: +44 (0)1224 395089 (direct line), +44 (0)344 928 5428 (switchboard) or +44 (0)7791 193918 (mobile).

Printed from /news/potatoes-practice-britain%E2%80%99s-largest-technical-potato-field-event-coming on 19/04/24 01:38:10 AM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.