Top potato researchers from Britain and The Netherlands have joined the speaker panel at the World Potato Congress (WPC 2012) due to take place in Edinburgh, Scotland, May 27-30.
Exploiting the potato genome and how new-found knowledge will ultimately impact production, nutritional qualities and consumer needs will be the focus for Dr Glenn Bryan of The James Hutton Institute, Dundee, Scotland.
Cutting the potato's production carbon footprint down to size, as part of the industry's sustainability agenda, will see Prof Anton Haverkort of Plant Research International, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Holland suggest actions for growers.
Lead speaker on the first day, Prof Sir John Beddington, UK government chief scientific adviser, will examine the global challenges of food security in the coming decades and how policymakers can influence more sustainable intensification of agriculture with crops like the potato.
He will discuss the recommendations of the UK Government Office for Science Global Food and Farming Futures report and how, one year on, this has been taken forward globally.
Dr Bryan, who led the UK arm of the research team that sequenced the genome of the potato, will explain how putting more science into the sector will make breeding programmes more effective.