Potato Wart Update Pt 1

Potato Wart Update Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I’m Bob Larson. The potato wart detection on Prince Edward Island in Canada back in October is still frustrating growers both north and south of the border.

National Potato Council CEO Kam Quarles says having fields shut down and not getting your potatoes to market is a tough spot for those growers …

QUARLES … “We sympathize with the growers in PEI. When you’re in a quarantine situation there clearly is an immediate economic impact. Your ability to ship is impaired.”

Quarles says it’s a delicate situation …

QUARLES … “Right now, seed producers in PEI can’t ship to the rest of Canada. They can’t ship to the U.S. and new protections are on for all other potatoes moving from PEI domestically in Canada and certainly the export restrictions to the United States are on all potatoes coming out of PEI. That’s a huge economic impact on those folks.”

Quarles says the quarantines are no fun, but this must be locked down until they know exactly what they’re dealing with …

QUARLES … “Particularly with wart, we don’t have that in the United States. If it gets into the U.S., our export markets with shut off overnight. You’re talking about well north of a $200 million annual impact on the U.S. potato industry.”

Tune in tomorrow for more on the potato wart problems in Canada and the relatively easy fix.

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