Scottish potato experts have joined forces with China’s potato processor Xisen Potato Industry Group to create a 3 million-pound ($3.87 million) potato research facility in Shandong Province. Xisen and the Chinese government will fund the lab which will be run in collaboration with potato scientists from the James Hutton Institute, an agricultural research center based in Dundee, Scotland…Full Article: China Daily Aug 2017

Key Point

  • In August 2016, the founder of Xisen Potato Industry Group visited the Balruddery Research Farm [has grown canola, potatoes, barley, wheat and grass], east central Scotland.

ChinaAg Comments

  • In 2016, Inner Mongolia’s Ulanqab (aka the “City of Potatoes”) produced 4.45 million MTs on 260,000 hectares (~17.11 MTs per ha yield).
  • In March 2016, Ulanqab’s Tai Mei Potato Industry signed an agreement with Shandong’s American Lorain to produce Lorain branded potato French fries.
  • In December 2015, China was exploring the possibility of classifying potatoes as a “staple grain”.
  • In July 2015, Shandong’s Xisen Potato Industry hosted a China Kitchen exhibition during the 2015 World Potato Congress in Beijing.
  • In March 2015, the Netherlands’ Farm Frites and Inner Mongolia’s Linkage Potato established a joint-venture in Wudan Town, Chifeng City, to produce French fries. The JV will reportedly consume 140,000 MTs of fresh potatoes and will begin supplying the Chinese market in 2017.
  • In January 2015, according to China’s Ministry of Agriculture, the country will expand its potato cultivation area from approximately 5 million ha to 10 million (unspecified timeframe).
  • In 2014, according to China’s Ministry of Agriculture, China produced 95 million MTs of potatoes on 5.6 million ha of land.
  • In 2013, according to FAOStat, China produced 88.9 million MTs of potatoes, 79 million MTs of sweet potatoes, 4.5 million MTs of cassava, and 1.8 million MTs of taro. Heilongjiang province produces approximately 8 million MTs of potatoes per year.
  • In 2011, China produced 88.3 million metric tons (MTs) of potatoes or 24% of the world’s potatoes. India was a distant second at 42.3 million MTs or 11% of global production.
  • From 1978 to 2011, China has steadily transitioned from sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) production to potato (Solanum tuberosum). During this period, sweet potato production declined from 131 million MTs to 75 million MTs, while potato output increased from 28 million MTs to 88 million MTs. Yields (MT per hectare) have slowly increased, but have stagnated since 2004 when it peaked at 18.7 MTs per ha. Production of cassava, taro and other tubers is minimal.
  • Founded in November 2005 and headquartered in Laoling City, Shandong Province, Xisen Potato Industry Co. Ltd. is a major producer and distributor of potato tuber seeds. The company carries out research and development on anti-viral potatoes for production in Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang, and other areas of China.

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