Improved potato quality and productivity
Productivity and quality of the potatoes in Bangladesh is affected in particular by the quality of the seed potatoes, and pest and disease levels. The potato growers often lack skills of pre and post-harvest management and disease control during cultivation. Currently, only 5 percent of the total seed requirement in the Bangladesh is met by certified high-quality, disease-free seed potatoes supplied by both the private and public sector. The remaining 95 percent is being met by small tubers harvested by the growers themselves. These tubers are then used as planting material during the next season. These low-quality potatoes are often affected by various bacterial, viral and fungal diseases which cause yield loss and deteriorate the storability of the potatoes.
What do we do?
Growers’ access to high-quality, disease- free seed potatoes and their improved knowhow and practices related to crop health needs, improve the storability and value adding capacities of the potatoes.
The following activities are therefore implemented during the project period:
- Demonstration fields are established at 9 selected sites in North-West Bangladesh.
- 5 fields are located near the potato storage Rangpur Himagar Pvt. Ltd. in Rangpur;
- 4 fields are located near the potato storage Salamin Foods Ltd. in Joypurhat;
- The 9 participating potato growers are supplied with Dutch high-quality, disease-free seed potatoes of the Metro and Diamant variety. The seeds are supplied for free to the growers by consortium partner Agroplant Holland BV. Each demo field is 1.5 acres of which:
- 0.5 acre is planted with Dutch seed potatoes of the Metro variety;
- 0.5 acre is planted with Dutch seed potatoes of the improved Diamant variety;
- 0.5 acre is planted with growers’ own locally harvested seed potatoes of the Diamant variety.
The demonstrations are implemented during two consecutive years as a dry-season crop in rotation with rice and other Kharif crops.
- During several stages of the cultivation cycle and after harvesting participating potato growers receive technical support and training on:
- prevention of pests and diseases and effective control where necessary;
- proper harvesting and recommended post-harvest handling, the initial grading, packing and transport.
- The results at each demonstration field are monitored and assessed.