Iron and zinc highlights of two new potato varieties CIP PUKA YAWRI and CIP KALLPA YAWRI

Introducing CIP PUKA YAWRI and CIP KALLPA YAWRI varieties.

Two novel potato varieties, CIP PUKA YAWRI and CIP KALLPA YAWRI, have emerged from a groundbreaking endeavor at the International Potato Center (CIP). These varieties, born from the cross between the parents CIP395017.229 x CIP306416.68, represent a significant leap in agricultural innovation, harnessing the potential of inter-ploid breeding strategy to confront evolving challenges in farming practices. The crosses were meticulously conducted from September to December 2012 at the Santa Ana Experimental Station of CIP-Huancayo, 3216 meters above sea level.

This milestone was achieved under the auspices of two distinct projects. The first, titled “Advancing achievements in breeding for early, resilient, and nutritious potato and sweetpotato,” was made possible through support from USAID. The overarching goal of this project was to modernize breeding operations for potatoes and sweet potatoes at CIP, aiming to enhance value delivery to stakeholders and increase the adoption of new varieties developed with CIP genetics. Specific objectives included the establishment of breeding markets with a user-driven mindset, identification of improvement areas, novel engagement strategies with stakeholders, and capacity development initiatives.

The second project, named “Potential new varieties of biofortified potatoes varieties with high iron and zinc contents to contribute to food and nutritional security in high Andean farmers,” was facilitated by The Technical Secretariat for Coordination of the CGIAR (STC-CGIAR). This project aimed to bolster food and nutrition security for vulnerable families in the Andes of Peru by developing biofortified potato varieties enriched with higher iron and zinc. Specific objectives included selecting and evaluating advanced biofortified potato clones and capacity building efforts targeting relevant stakeholders.

CIP PUKA YAWRI and CIP KALLPA YAWRI boast remarkable attributes essential for addressing pressing agricultural concerns and improving food security. These varieties exhibit high iron and zinc contents, crucial for combating anemia and malnutrition prevalent in the Andean regions of Peru. With wide adaptation (2600- 4200 masl), yields exceeding 20 tons per hectare compared with the 12 tons per hectare of the landrace potatoes average yield; and resistance to Rancha (e.g., Late blight disease), the primary potato disease in Peru, they promise to enhance agricultural productivity and resilience.

Furthermore, both varieties demonstrate homogeneity and stability in the expression of their distinctive traits. Their superior characteristics, including elevated levels of iron, zinc, and dry matter content, ensure not only nutritional benefits but also exceptional taste and texture, enabling them to compete favorably with traditional varieties in the diets of Andean populations.

The dissemination strategy for CIP PUKA YAWRI and CIP KALLPA YAWRI prioritizes women and children in Peru’s northern and central Andean regions. Targeting vulnerable households and emphasizing women’s pivotal role in food security aims to reach over 5,000 households initially, fostering the adoption of biofortified varieties through educational campaigns and agricultural interventions. This strategy aims to reduce anemia and chronic malnutrition, particularly among Peruvian women and children.

The varieties are available for licensing to certified seed producers registered with the Peruvian Seed Authority (SENASA). CIP applied for plant variety protection in accordance with UPOV and Peruvian legislation and can issue commercial production licenses. In accordance with its mandate, CIP requires licensees to accept providing seed to smallholder farmers at preferential rates. CIP also requires licensees to contribute financially to the Benefit Sharing Fund of the International Plant Treaty. The fund supports conservation and sustainable use projects in the global South

The dissemination strategy is in line with Peruvian national priorities regarding the production, availability, and affordability of high-quality seed for farmers.

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