Canada: Research site to help expand markets for vegetable growers

New crops and varieties developed here will help expand market opportunities for vegetable farmers, says Keith Kuhl chair of Peak of the Market and Tracy Shinners-Carnelley, the grower co-operative’s director of research and quality enhancement.New varietal research, underway near Winkler in Manitoba province, may make field production of sweet potatoes possible in a Canadian climate too. Sweet potatoes are included in plot trials within Peak of the Market’s research site on 15 acres south of the community at a former Manitoba Crop Diversification site. This is the second year of the program, focused on improving yields and developing new varieties to create new production opportunities for potato and carrot growers. The majority of research trials underway at the site looks at nutrient and pest management issues and needs related to potato production in general, however. “The No. 1 focus is on new opportunities in potato varieties for the fresh market,” said Keith Kuhl, board chair with Peak of the Market and president of Southern Potato at Winkler. The research is being done in co-operation with the Vineland Research Innovation Centre out of Ontario. More