Ketchup and fries or chips and salsa, can tomato teach us anything about breeding and production of a true-seed propagated potato?
Monday, July 26, 2021
10:45 AM - 11:15 AM
David Francis, Horticulture and Crop Science, The Ohio State University.
Converting potato from a tetraploid tuber propagated crop to a diploid true-seed propagated crop has implications for breeding programs and production systems. Prior to the 1970’s tomato was produced from inbred “open-pollinated” varieties. The introduction of hybrid varieties facilitated the combination of traits, protection of germplasm, and eventually improved yield. Arguably these changes also facilitated market and production system diversification. Production changed from directed seeded crop to a transplanted crop as a response to changes in seed prices. Growing seedlings and transplanting required a greenhouse industry and suitable equipment all of which have continued to change and improve. Seed production shifted overseas due to the cost of labor involved in producing hybrids. These changes also created exposure and mechanisms for pathogen migration and created a need for seed testing and seed trade regulations. Research conducted under ‘Potato 2.0’ will not only help evaluate the potential for true-seed potato, it will also create an opportunity to imagine how disruptive technologies may re-shape or even create new markets for the potato industry. Tomato seed industry and production practices provides one lens to imagine how this future might develop.