In what is likely to revolutionise seed potato production in India, the Central Potato Research Institute (CPRI), Shimla, has developed a technique based on Aeroponics to produce seed potatoes without exposing them to soil, reported the Indian Express.
The institute first designed a prototype and tested it on three varieties of potato seeds, namely Kufri Bahar, Kufri Suryaand Kufri Chipsona, under net house conditions.
After the success of the initial trials, the CPRI has upscaled the system to start a commercial unit under greenhouse conditions having a capacity of 3,000 plants in Modipuram in Uttar Pradesh.
Aeroponics is the process of growing plants in air or moist environment in a closed or semi-closed environment without the use of soil or an aggregate medium.
Giving a big fillip to productivity, seed potato production using Aeroponics ensures five to six times more production of minitubers as compared to traditional tissue culture system. With no exposure to soil, there is little danger of any soil-based disease.