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UK: Potato growers ‘must look in dusty corners’ to innovate

SPot East conference speakers Andrew Francis of Elveden Estate with AHDB's Mark Stalham (common scab researcher), Marc Allison (nitrogen and water researcher) and Graham Tomalin (herbicides and tuber numbers researcher) at the event in Newmarket. Picture: SARAH CHAMBERSResearchers are continuing to make strides in helping UK potato growers to get the best crop with the least environmental impact as a nationally-significant Suffolk farm project reached the end of its second year, farmers were told this week. Elveden Estate farm manager Andrew Francis said forward-thinking growers had already made innovations and were now looking for gains in less obvious areas to boost yields while working more sustainably as researchers revealed latest findings from the project. The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), which chose the estate near Thetford to become its Strategic Potato (or SPot) Farm for the east, hosted a farmer workshop event showing the progress researchers had made at Elveden across a diverse range of trials, including ones on common scab, nitrogen and irrigation, herbicides, tuber numbers and runoff. More