Potatoes are an important vegetable crop in South Africa and accounts for approximately 50% 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 R6.6 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 worldwide to introduce a comprehensive crop programme for potatoes – elevating crop solutions to the next tier.
Capturing value for Growers
Syngenta’s groundbreaking PotatoPack™ is the result of dedicated research and field trials conducted throughout South Africa, with more than 50 trials showing an average yield increase of 6 tons per hectare.
As a proudly South African product and inspired by the targets of Syngenta’s Good Growth Plan related to making crops more efficient without using more land, water and other resources, POTATOPACK is making a major difference in producing more food with less waste.