Potato Storage Course Offered

Cavendish Agri Services and Dr. Robert Coffin along with David DeLodder are pleased to offer a Potato Storage Certification Course to improve storage management practices.
Course Description

To: Anyone interested in expanding their knowledge of managing potato storages

Date: Week of March 23-2015

Location: Florenceville, New Brunswick

Registration fee: $750


Millions of pounds of potatoes rot needlessly in storages every year. Improved management of potato storages would greatly help to reduce storage rot and also help to maintain high quality in potato tubers destined for use for processing (chips, fries), seed or table. Regular monitoring of the storages may permit early detection of problems, thereby reducing the chance of rot in the storage building.

This course has been designed to address issues relating to optimum storage management, an explanation of storage design and equipment functions, learning how to assess different situations in the storage and how the grower may adjust/correct different situations to assure optimum storage conditions are met for different end uses of tubers.

The course instructors Dr. Robert Coffin & Dave DeLodder have years of experience in storing potatoes under PEI conditions, and will share their numerous experiences with course participants. Part of the course will be classroom sessions to discuss theory and part of the course will be actual measurement of different parameters inside several designs of storages. The written exam will be open book.

Some of the highlights of the course will include

  • A brief review of potato plant physiology, some of the common diseases/disorders of tubers that could affect success in storage
  • A review of false perceptions regarding potato storage practices
  • How to assess tuber quality for:
    • Processing – fry colour, sugar concentrations
    • Table potatoes – skin diseases, pressure bruising, shrinkage
    • Seed – skin disorders, seed vigour, and physiological age
  • Understanding the design of different buildings and the equipment involved in controlling temperature and air flow (fans, thermometers, computers, air intake and exhaust systems)
  • Learning how to correctly assess and record air movement (volume, speed), carbon dioxide concentrations, static pressure, relative humidity; and how to modify these values in different storages
  • Familiarize students with the correct use and calibration of different types of monitoring equipment and how to record readings for crop insurance purposes and for making informed decisions to change temperature, CO2 and or relative humidity in the buildings
    • Kestrel air flow meter
    • C02 meter
    • Psychrometer (to measure relative humidity)
    • Pulp temperature
  •  Every student taking the course will be required to have their own set of instruments prior class. If desired these instruments can be purchased through Cavendish Agri Services. Please place order ASAP.
  • Factors that are assessed in conducting a “storage fitness test” such as condition of tubers, condition of building and systems and knowledge base/ work habits of storage manager
  • Why potatoes destined for processing must be stored differently compared to potatoes for seed and table
  • Chemical treatments applied to potatoes in storage (fungicides, plant growth regulators)
  • Class size will be limited to a maximum of 30 people confirmed, on or before March 6/15
  • Further offerings of the course and will be scheduled based on demand.

Additional information on the course or any further questions can be obtained by contacting Jonathan Waugh, Cavendish Agri Services @ 902-393-0254, waugh.jonathan@cavendish-agri.com