Paul Gans - Plant Health Management

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Seed Potato Quality Management

Secure the best available crops

The aim of this service is twofold (1) it gives you first hand, objective and truly independent seed quality data and (2) it enables you to negotiate with the seed supplier on the basis of facts. Seed potatoes are inherently vulnerable. A great deal of effort goes into the production of the best stocks and much progress has been made towards healthier seed. However seed potatoes are vulnerable and disease and physiological factors which may compromise performance are often hidden. Only by detailed observations of seed crops in the field and in stores is it possible to identify the best managed seed crops.

How does it work?

  • Seed crops are inspected prior to desiccation. Test digs are made to look for tell-tale signs underground, for example rotting seed tubers, stem canker, brown flecking caused by the skin spot fungus and the general fitness and appearance. Low levels of blight, blackleg and other diseases can be spotted in the field which, once the crop is desiccated, become invisible.
  • During late autumn the stores are visited, washed samples are assessed and the general condition of the store is evaluated.
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  • On delivery a sample is drawn from each lorry, washed and assessed including a microscopic assessment ("eyeplug test").
  • Relevant crop data are collated, for example planting, desiccation and harvest dates and tuber counts. Advice may be given on seed rates, chemical treatments or other relevant crop advice.


Every effort is made to secure a good liaison between buyer and seller. The support will continue, if required, during the growth of the ware crop. Good relationships have been established with several excellent seed suppliers, especially for free varieties.

To discuss please get in touch with Paul at or
ring 01223 212496.

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