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Teagasc: GM potato trial cuts blight fungicide use by up to 90%

A sprayer sprays a fungicide on a potato cropA genetically modified potato variety designed to resist the devastating disease blight, enabled fungicide use to be cut by 80-90% in trials, without compromising efficacy or yield. Research company Teagasc has concluded that combining GM technology with an integrated approach to disease control can dramatically cut the overall environmental impact of potato growing. Irish researchers spent the past three years comparing one susceptible variety (Desiree) with two different resistant potato varieties. These are Sarpo Mira, developed through conventional breeding, and a version of Desiree, which received a resistance gene from a wild potato. This work is part of the EU funded “AMIGA” project and was carried out in collaboration with Wageningen University in the Netherlands. More