What do we look for in new seed varieties, is it all about looks and taste for the supermarkets? Is it about dual PCN resistance, some form of late blight resistance or a long dormancy so we can compete with the withdrawal of so many active ingredients now and in the coming years? As these products are taken off the shelf we have to decide what the future holds and how do we continue to grow potatoes without massive losses from potatoes that are either value packs or don't make it to the consumer.
Do we continue to grow the same varieties and buy new, more expensive but less efficient chemicals or do we use our breeding programs to combat these issues. Buyers want growers to grow a select few varieties cheaply, using less chemicals in the production and storage and the ability to store for longer but still look like they are freshly dug.
There will continue to be a market for the likes of Maris Piper and King Edward as long as market forces require and they are able to be grown viably but around that is where the change will come from. What do think, where should the change come from, varietal or chemical, grower pressure or will the change come from the supermarkets or governments?