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Potatoes are an important vegetable crop in South Africa and accounts for approximately 45% of total vegetable crops produced and 3% of the total agriculture production.

The crop is grown across 16 production areas on a total of around 50 000 hectares.  Potatoes are mainly grown under irrigation, but dryland production also contributes to the more than 2 million tons produced annually.

It is estimated that Africa’s population will have doubled by 2050.  With the global increase in consumption of potatoes, against the off-set of diminishing natural resources, the importance of producing more from less is high on the agenda.  Syngenta has a holistic approach towards increased crop production, but it is apparent that potatoes are rapidly growing in significance – especially given the fact that it is rated as one of South Africa’s most important staple foods, contributing no less than R3.6 billion to the greater South African economy.

Global resources, local offer

Over the past 10 years, Syngenta has invested more than $9 billion into research and development, dedicating 5 000 employees for this purpose, screening 200 000 new compounds annually.  These research results translate into the development of innovative products that continue to set the benchmark.  In fact, in 2005 Syngenta South Africa became the first company to introduce a crop production programme for potatoes – elevating crop solutions to the next tier.

Syngenta’s groundbreaking PotatoPack™ is the result of dedicated research and field trials conducted throughout South Africa, with more than 36 trials showing an average yield increase of 6 tons per hectare.  For more information on the PotatoPack, click here 

Expanding chemical solutions

In 2011, Syngenta launched two new revolutionary potato solutions: Revus for late blight control and Ampligo for potato tuber moth control. 

In the 2009 EuroBlight fungicide comparison, Revus not only topped the ranking for performance against Phytophthora leaf blight, but also  howed excellent activity against new growth, stem blight and tuber blight,  as well as exceptional rainfastness.  For full information, go to the EuroBlight website.

For more information on Revus’ innovative mode of action and unbeatable rainfastness, visit the Revus website

Ampligo is the one-stop solution for effective potato tuber moth control.  Local and international trials showed Ampligo’s superior efficacy when compared to pyrethroids and control of up to 21 days.  This results in less applications and efficient time management on the farm.

Capturing value for Growers

Syngenta’s potato portfolio has effectively restored the value of one of the potato producer’s most precious resources: agricultural land.  It therefore becomes clear why Syngenta’s PotatoPack represents a paradigm shift in the way growers approach sustainable potato production.