The aim of the project is to reduce the risks associated with over-intensive potato production, which can have negative effects on the environment, soil fertility, the risk of erosion of arable land and impact on water quality. In the first phase of the project (2022 and 2023), the aim is to study existing levers and techniques for reducing input, and then to combine them in order to achieve an effective reduction in input for both the fresh market and industrial processing.
High-performance technical itineraries that break with current techniques will then be analysed and compared in the final year of the project. The multifactor approach will include the following:
1. The use of a wider diversity of more robust varieties for greater resilience to the impacts of climate change and good tolerance/resistance to mildew;
2. Innovative cultivation techniques to reduce inputs (fertilisers, irrigation, herbicides, insecticides, weedkillers);
3. Improved respect for the soil and its fertility by reducing the risk of soil erosion;
4. Potatoes tested for their suitability for processing, so that they can be effectively used and valued by operators.
The different cultivation models will be assessed from a technical, environmental and economic point of view. In addition, possibilities for the local assessment of production will also be looked at, involving the various different players in the sector.
This project is being implemented thanks to a partnership between CRA-W, responsible for setting up and monitoring the trials, and FIWAP, acting as a link between research and the industry.
Financing: Wallonia Recovery Plan (Plan de Relance de la Wallonie), Project D65-1428
Caption: The "CPB catcher", developed by FieldWorkers (Netherlands) and tested during the Patat'Up trial visit on 04/07/23.