potatoes

BANGOR, Maine - All four members of Maine's Congressional delegation are joining a group of lawmakers that wants President Donald Trump's administration to prioritize the U.S. potato industry in trade talks with China.

Maine ‘Ground Zero’ for New Potato Disease

May 5, 2016
thegrower.org

A bacteria affecting Maine seed potatoes could pose big problems for Aroostook County farmers who sell to growers on the Eastern Seaboard.

Scientists at the Maine Department of Agriculture are consulting with European researchers who have a longer history with the bacteria known as Dickeya dianthicola. The bacteria creates dark lesions on the plant’s stems that farmers associate with a potato disease commonly known as blackleg.

Jennifer Mitchell / MPBN

ORONO, Maine - As you go about your shopping this spring, keep your eyes peeled for a new potato hitting the market. The Caribou Russet is the latest variety to emerge from the University of Maine experimental potato lab.

BUXTON, Maine (AP) _ Maine officials say late blight symptoms have been found in a potato field in Buxton.
 
    The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension say the blight symptoms were located this week. Late blight is a non-treatable disease that spreads rapidly in warm, wet conditions. It affects potatoes and tomatoes.
 
    MOFGA and the university ask growers and gardeners to take precautions to prevent infections and spread of the disease.

Maine's potato growers don't have a whole lot to celebrate at the moment; a major processing contract negotiated by a growers' bargaining council resulted in disappointingly low figures. Maine's spud crop last year was worth almost $170 million dollars and potato farmers cultivated some 54,000 acres, most of that in Aroostook County. But fewer acres will be planted this year, and with a chilly, wet spring in northern Maine, 2014 could be a tough one for many growers of Maine's iconic tuber.