Calendar: Idaho Potato Conference

Published online: Jan 04, 2021 Event Calendar
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Plan to attend the 53rd annual Idaho Potato Conference Jan. 19-21, 2021. Given the unusual times of a global pandemic, the Idaho Potato Conference shifted from the annual in-person conference held in Pocatello to three days of virtual presentations. The 20-minute pre-recorded presentations with an additional five minutes of live Q&A will be given throughout the morning of each day (8 a.m. to noon MT). In addition, five-minute updates by leading potato industry companies will be included each day.

A Spanish Language Session will also be offered virtually for 2021.  This session will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. on Jan. 19. Topics in Spanish will include reducing bruise, grading potatoes, common storage disease and much more. There will be short videos and live discussions led by University of Idaho extension educators Joseph Sagers and Jason Thomas.
Highlights for this year’s three-day virtual conference include:

  • The virtual format allows the conference organizers to invite many colleagues from outside of Idaho. The program will include:
    • Dr. Paul Bethke from USDA-ARS in Wisconsin to discuss “Tuber lenticels”— what is their function and why do they become enlarged?
    • Dr. Andy Robinson from North Dakota University/University of Minnesota – to elaborate on the seasonal topic of “Managing brown center and hollow heart”
    • Dr. Ken Frost from Oregon State University will provide a much-needed summary on the “Blackleg/soft rot disease in potatoes”
    • Dr. Mark Pavek from Washington State University will provide “Cultural management updates on Clearwater Russet and Alturas” and his graduate student Francisco Gonzalez will provide new (and old) information on “Measuring soil moisture in potato fields”
  • The remainder of the 20-minute presentations will focus on a wide variety of topics:
    • Changes in potato quality during packing and shipping
    • Factors that impact development of bruises
    • Analyzing the annual Idaho potato price change during crop transition
    • What makes new varieties better than Burbank?
    • Susceptibility of russet cultivars to common potato diseases
    • Learning to use growth regulators
    • Managing early die in potatoes
    • Best management practices for pink rot and Pythium leak
    • Soil-borne diseases – what causes them and what you can do about it
    • Potato mop-top virus (PMTV) and other viruses
    • Diagnosing and predicting foliar diseases in Idaho
    • What happened to zebra chip in Idaho?
    • Variety reaction to zebra chip and interaction with PVY
    • Volunteer potato control
    • Using plant-pest interactions to build resistance
    • What does healthy soil look like in Southern Idaho?
    • Sustainability and the potato industry: Working together to meet customer and consumer demands
    • Idaho Potato Commission update

Idaho Pesticide License Recertification credits (3) will be available on Jan 20. Attendees are required by ISDA to pass a short on-line quiz to receive credits.

Registration is free, but you must register in advance—including the Spanish language session. Additional details regarding the agenda, topics, and registration can be found at the conference website