A million hectares of potatoes in the developing world

Potato varieties bred with CIP materials or obtained with help from the center now occupy over 1 million hectares of land worldwide. This statistic comes from a survey of 23 national potato-breeding programs in developing countries in Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, which together account for more than 80% of developing country potato area and production.

Beating the heat of global warming

Potato material from the International Potato Center (CIP) is helping farmers to enhance food and income security in Central and Southwest Asia in the face of climate change. Factsheet: Enhanced food and income security in Southwest and Central Asia (SWCA) through potato varieties with improved tolerance to abiotic stress.

Potato becomes the new star crop in Kenya

The government of Kenya is spearheading efforts to upgrade the status of potato as a strategic crop. The International Potato Center (known by its Spanish acronym CIP) is a key partner in this endeavor, along with local government officials, the private sector, non-governmental organizations, and international cooperation agencies. The underlying goal of this initiative is to help achieve food security in this poverty-stricken nation, and improve the livelihood of its people. The expected effect is to boost Kenya’s potato production threefold by 2012.

Super sweetpotato gains ground in San Ramon

San Ramon, Peru – What if we could combine the high levels of beta-carotene – a precursor of vitamin A- found in orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, with the high anthocyanin content – an antioxidant that prevents cancer and aging – of purple sweetpotatoes?

The fastest spreading potato variety in China

Chinese farmers are rapidly adopting a CIP-developed potato variety that resists drought and gives much better yields than local varieties. CIP scientists developed the Tacna variety in 1993 and it was introduced into China in 1994 in the form of in vitro plantlets.

Do you want to become a Hero for Life?

On October 1, you can join a global campaign launched by the Roots for Life Foundation. This is a unique opportunity for 4,235 donors to become Heroes for Life and help to secure the future of humanity by contributing to the conservation of the 4,235 native potato varieties held in trust at the world collection of the International Potato Center in Lima, Peru.

New World Catalogue of Potato Varieties

The new 2009/10 edition of the “World Catalogue of Potato Varieties” is available. The Catalogue now contains more than 4500 potato varieties that are cultivated in over 100 countries world wide. The Catalogue also contains descriptions of about 1900 wild potato accesions from the wild potato collection maintained in the CIP genebank, in trust for the FAO International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

Sweetening Lives with Sweetpotato

The International Potato Center has launched a major project to leverage the untapped potential of sweetpotato to significantly improve the nutrition, incomes, and food production of farming families in sub-Saharan Africa, especially among impoverished women and children. The project, titled Sweetpotato Action for Security and Health in Africa (SASHA), will be implemented in eight Sub-Saharan African countries, and is supported by a five-year, $21 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. It is the largest of a group of grants presented by Bill Gates at the World Food Prize Symposium on October 15, 2009 in Des Moines, Iowa. “Melinda and I believe that helping the poorest small-holder farmers grow more and get it to market is the world’s single most powerful lever for reducing hunger and poverty,” Gates said. The SASHA program will help set the groundwork for reducing malnutrition, combating vitamin A deficiency, and improving incomes for 10 million African households within 10 years.