MPIC Committee to Evaluate Varieties for 2018
August 23, 2017

The Variety Release Committee of the Michigan Potato Industry Commission (MPIC) will meet on Thursday of this week beginning at the Commission’s Demonstration Storages in Montcalm at 10:00 am. The goal for the day is twofold; first to look at the Box Bin Trials at the Montcalm Research Center; and to look at the bulk plantings of varieties that will be placed in the storage facilities.

“This is the committee’s first opportunity to see many of these varieties in any volume. Hopefully, some of these varieties will be the future superstars of the potato industry for potato chips”, stated Mike Wenkel Executive Director of MPIC.

Wenkel continued, “The facility’s commercial storage conditions at the facilities allow us to store enough volume to deliver a load of potatoes to a potato chip manufacture and have them provide direct feedback on is performance.”

At the Commission’s Demonstration Storage facility, two varieties MSR127-2 and W5955-1 (Hodag) are scheduled to be looked at under commercial storage conditions for a second year while three varieties NY152, MSX540-4 and MSW485-2 are scheduled to be looked at under commercial storage conditions for the first time.

The Box Bin Trials are providing the industry with the opportunity to collect storage data on an additional 19 varieties, many of which have limited data on their storage performance. Additionally, in the Box Bin Trials the industry will see how three varieties, Manistee, Hodag and MSR127-2 perform with reduced nitrogen applications.

This work is a partnership between the growers and shippers of the MPIC, Michigan State University, the potato chip processors across the nation and Potatoes USA.

Varietal Descriptions

Manistee (MSL292-A) was developed at Michigan State University with the following characteristics: Average yield with early to mid-season maturity, excellent chip-processing quality and long storage potential, scab tolerance and specific gravity similar to Snowden, uniform round tubers with shallow eyes and heavy netted skin, some compressed tubers apical to stem.

MSR127-2 was developed at Michigan State University with the following characteristics: scab resistant, high specific gravity, good chip quality from 52 °F storage, above average yield potential, medium-late maturity, in SNAC, NCPT, and Fast Track trials.

MSW485-2 was developed at Michigan State University with the following characteristics: High yielding with high specific gravity, mid-season maturity, excellent chip processing quality out of the field and long-term storage, resistance to late-blight and common scab tolerant, in Fast Track and SNAC trials.

MSX540-4 was developed at Michigan State University with the following characteristics: Average yield with high specific gravity and high percentage of A-sized tubers, mid to late-season maturity, long-term chip-processing quality with resistance to PVY and late blight and tolerance to common scab, currently  in Fast Track program

W5955-1 (Hodag) was developed at the University of Wisconsin with the following characteristics: average yield, high specific gravity, size profile similar to Atlantic, management should be adjusted because this variety tends to produce large tubers, long storage potential with common scab resistance.