No, potato breeding is not dangerous. The methods we apply have been safely developed over many years for many different crops. These new methods ensure that they can be developed more quickly, in accordance with the demands of the changing environment; think, for example, of disease or climate change. Furthermore, hybrid potato breeding does not use genetic manipulation.
One significant advantage of hybrid breeding is, that it is quicker and easier to adapt to a changing environment This can, for example, have enormous advantages when it comes to better resistance to a specific disease. The advantages could be so great that these new varieties will ultimately replace all of our existing potato varieties. This might sound extreme, but experience with other crops has shown that better versions make it on to the market in around five years.
No, our methods are completely free of genetic manipulation. Genetic manipulation is when genetic material from other species are introduced into a product. Hybrid breeding is a completely different approach. In hybrid breeding we only use the natural processes of crossing and inbreeding to develop new potato varieties.
After maize, wheat and rice, the potato is the most important source of food for the world’s population. In addition to this, the potato is relatively healthy and requires little water, especially in comparison to the other large crops. In a world with an ever-growing population, the potato can well be expected to play an important role in the food chain. Through the technology that Aardevo is developing, the evolution of the potato is expected to come thick and fast. The potato will become better, stronger and more resistant in the coming decades, which will only serve to strengthen the potential of this plant.
Aardevo knows that innovation is the key to a successful future. In order to fully support the innovative process, many factors need to be taken into consideration. The Netherlands has everything we need, in spades! There is an excellent infrastructure and a highly skilled workforce on hand. We also have extensive experience in agriculture, with plenty of excellent farmers and growers with whom we can work. In short, all the ingredients we need to promote our unique development programme.
The technique of hybrid breeding has been adapted too many other global crops. The reason that it has not succeeded for potatoes yet is due to the complex nature of the potato itself. The potato is a tetraploid; this means that the potato has four copies of each chromosomes. So when they are crossbred, the number of potential variations that may arise is considerable. For a long time, techniques and knowledge weren’t far enough along to manage the entire process of hybrid breeding. Recently, progress has been made, enabled by inbreeding diploid potatoes, to produce homozygous diploid potatoes. This means that two sets of chromosomes are identical, making the result of the crossbreeding much more predictable. This discovery has left the doors wide open for the further development of hybrid breeding.
A GREEN REVOLUTION!
We at Aardevo believe that potato has the potential to conquer the world and that innovation is the key to future-proof crops. We are about to launch the best potato the world has ever seen.
WORKING ON THE BREAKTHROUGH