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Potatoes New Zealand’s Research, Development and Extension (R,D & E) activities comprises breeding, on-farm productivity and manufacturing innovations. This includes fundamental research that drives on-farm productivity innovations, including plant breeding, and the development and extension activities on-farm to achieve actual gains for growers. It also focuses on process innovations for the manufacturing sector to increase manufacturing productivity, and includes new product innovations and the utilisation of waste streams.


There are two parts to Potatoes New Zealand’s Research, Development and Extension programme

Part A

On-farm Productivity RD &E are activities to improve the productivity of potato growing. Improving productivity means increasing production relative to inputs. It does not mean just increasing yield, as this can be achieved at a higher marginal cost without adding value.

Part B

Process Innovation RD &E  is concerned with the NZ industry beyond the farm gate. The performance of this sector is vital as potatoes grown for processing represent 65% of the total crop. Processed potato products are exposed to competition from international marketers. Productivity improvement across the value chain is necessary to increase competitiveness, and thereby both protect the domestic manufacturing base and also position for growth in exports. Productivity in manufacturing requires investment in R&D to minimise waste, utilise waste in new products, and develop more efficient processing.


R&D Technical Panel

The Potatoes New Zealand Research & Development Technical Panel is made up of industry growers, processors, agronomists and technical experts that advises on the R&D Strategy and activities. The Panel meets regularly during the year to review the current PNZ Strategy, observe field trials, discuss results and comment on planned activities. The current panel members are:

  • Chris Claridge, Potatoes New Zealand
  • Roger Blyth
  • Graham Bunckenburg
  • Scott Clelland
  • Iain Kirkwood
  • Jen Linton
  • Daniel Lovett
  • Ross McCallum
  • Tim Pike
  • Nick Pyke
  • Monty Spencer
  • Shane Smith
  • Daniell Sutton