News Center Maine features potato varieties developed by UMaine researchers

News Center Maine featured potato variety testing at the University of Maine’s Agricultural Research and Development Farm in Presque Isle. The process starts at the UMaine campus in Orono, where potato plants are cross-pollinated in greenhouses, which results in thousands of true potato seeds. After that, researchers and students use those seeds to grow 50,000 plants in Presque Isle. Plants are then selected over the course of two years, and they narrow it down to the best 250. “You can see this is just a really pretty smooth skin; it’s bright in the marketplace. It would jump out on the shelf if someone was going to buy them. It has to yield well, [and] it has to have tolerance to some of the important pests and diseases, or more stress tolerant varieties which can help with warming, changing climate,” said Greg Porter, professor of crop ecology and management at UMaine. Potato News Today shared the News Center Maine report.