Wart gall detected again in a field in Prince Edward Island

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The potato wart detected again in a field in Prince Edward Island

Suspended for five months, exports to the United States of fresh potatoes from the island resumed in April.

The potato wart does not threaten human health, but it reduces field yields and makes potatoes unsaleable.

The potato wart, which caused huge problems for PEI growers last fall and winter, has just been detected in new in a provincial potato field.

According to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), this discovery was not unexpected, as more than 17,000 soil samples were taken from farmland in the island between March 5 and June 30. Testing of these samples has not been completed.

The potato wart is a fungus that disfigures potatoes and reduces their yield. It is harmless to human health.

On November 22, 2021, Canada suspended all exports of fresh potatoes from Prince Edward Island to the United States after potato wart was found in two fields in the province. During the winter, the fungus was discovered in a third field.

Potatoes are a major industry in Prince Edward Island.

Fresh potato exports resumed in April. However, those of seed potatoes to the United States are still suspended. They make up about 10% of the US market, which is worth some $120 million a year.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency laboratory in Charlottetown detected the presence of potato wart in a field last week, as part of the ongoing investigation into detections that occurred in October 2021 and February 2022, a spokesperson for the federal agency said in a written statement.

Scab has just been detected in samples from an adjacent potato field to another field where it was discovered in October last year.

According to the agency, the detection of potato wart is an indication that its investigation is proceeding as planned . An update on this file is promised in October.

A month ago, the Prince Edward Island Potato Council expressed its dissatisfaction about the length of the investigation.

Greg Donald, the president of this group, mentioned that the agency had told him that it was able to test 3000 samples per month. She says she will need 36,000 samples in total for her investigation.

With information from CBC< em>

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