PRESERVATION OF FRY COLOUR FOR ETHYLENE-TREATED POTATOES IN UK

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STOREGUARD NOW AVAILABLE TO THE UK POTATO INDUSTRY.

A NEW method of maintaining fry colour of potatoes stored in ethylene-applied stores is now available in the UK.

Manufactured by AgroFresh, StoreGuard uses 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) to counter the change in fry colour that can sometimes occur in potatoes stored for processing when ethylene is used as a sprout inhibitor.

Priced on a cost per tonne, StoreGuard is applied early in the storage process, before ethylene treatment begins. Soluble tablets of StoreGuard are introduced to an activator solution in pouches placed in the store and personnel access is allowed 24 hours after treatment.

As well as maintaining fry colour, StoreGuard can also protect the stored crop from the ‘shock’ of introducing ethylene, reducing transpiration rates, and in turn, weight loss and store fan times.

Biofresh Safestore, which secured the UK marketing rights to StoreGuard in November 2023 following CRD approval, is promoting the approach to UK potato growers and processors based on four years of impressive trial data.

Jeremy Barraclough of Biofresh Safestore said: “Combining SafeGuard with the ethylene-based Safestore system is a highly effective way of both suppressing sprouting and countering the effects on fry colour that some varieties can experience when treated with ethylene. With both SafeGuard and SafeStore, there is no detectable residue on the potatoes, and the data from the commercial trials conducted under an experimental licence in Europe show the benefits of applying 1-MCP.”

As well as Europe, Biofresh has conducted trials in the UK, including at Winters Lane Storage, which hosted GB Potatoes’ SPOt Store day recently. Simon Faulkner, an independent agronomist and director of SDF Agriculture who has been involved in the commercial trials of StoreGuard over the last three years, was one of the speakers at the event.

“StoreGuard has been shown to protect some processing potato varieties against the potential negative effects that ethylene can have on fry-colours,” he said. “Applied before ethylene treatment commences, the benefits of StoreGuard typically last through to April.

“Combined with the careful introduction of ethylene and managing carbon dioxide levels, StoreGuard can help to maintain processing potato quality during storage.”

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British Potato Review
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