A new, disease-free potato, named CIP-Matilde, has been developed by international breeders in collaboration with farmers in Peru.
All those involved with the development of this new variety claim that it is inherently resistant to late blight.
The new variety has resistance genes from wild potatoes transferred through a conventional breeding method called pre-breeding.
Launch Of Disease-Free Potato
Launched to mark 42nd World Food Day, the Crop Trust and the International Potato Centre (CIP) have officially unveiled this new development as a means of highlighting the role played by potatoes as an important source of nutrition within communities around the world.
The new potato was developed by farmers, breeders, and scientists in Peru by identifying wild potatoes with resistance to disease, and incorporating this resistance into cultivated varieties, a process known as pre-breeding.
The outcome, it has been declared, is a tasty tuber suitable for regular consumption that also withstands late blight.
The disease, which is becoming increasingly common due to global warming, poses a serious threat to existing potato crops.
The new potato, which has been in development since 2010, should ensure that edible potatoes remain available to mankind in the long-term.
Cost Of Potato Blight
At present, late blight costs potato farmers around the world up to €10 billion every year.
CIP-Matilde was developed by the International Potato Centre (CIP) with the support of the Crop Trust through its Crop Wild Relatives Project, an 11-year initiative to help agriculture adapt to climate change.
The Crop Trust is an international organisation based in Bonn, Germany working to safeguard crop diversity for future generations. It supports gene banks, including the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, and pre-breeding efforts around the world.