Canada: Prince Edward Island’s potato industry on the rise again
Prince Edward Island (PEI) is set to reclaim its standing as a premier provider of trusted seed, fresh, and processing potatoes in North America and beyond, according to the PEI Potato Board’s general manager.
Despite the significant challenges faced by the PEI potato industry following the detection of potato wart in two fields in late 2021, the industry is now showing signs of recovery and a promising future.
Greg Donald, during an interview with the Island Farmer, expressed confidence in the industry’s future, stating that PEI will soon be the most trusted source for potatoes. He attributes this optimism to robust scientific evidence and recent positive developments from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).
Donald emphasized the rigorous testing and improvements being made to regain trust and ensure customers of the quality of their potatoes. The CFIA has conducted nearly 50,000 tests for potato wart, and their third annual national potato wart survey in 2023 showed no new findings of potato wart in PEI.
The PEI Potato Board is optimistic that the new guidelines will allow for the resumption of seed exports, which have been suspended since November 2021, and ease restrictions on table stock movement.