Tag Archives: carrots

Carrot growers look to straw alternatives

AHDB Horticulture has warned that increasing prices for straw, which are likely to be made worse this winter due to the current weather, are making carrot growers consider alternatives for in-field storage of their crops.

According to the levy body, the estimated costs for the use of straw to cover carrot crops was around £4,000-5,000 per hectare, but straw prices are now an average of 50 per cent higher year-on-year. AHDB has funded practical investigations into viable alternatives to straw, partly because of the volatility in supply and price of straw, but also due to concerns about nitrogen lock-up and weed issues.

Dawn Teverson, AHDB knowledge exchange manager, comments, “All of the treatments tested provided effective frost protection during the winter so the viability of alternatives for field storage will depend upon cost and how practical they are to use. Straw alternatives such as cellulose fibre and closed cell polythene foam may be useful alternatives but growers will need to evaluate the cost-benefit against straw prices.”

Results from the research showed that growers wishing to reduce straw usage could consider moving to polythene over straw in order to use one-third of the normal amount of straw. This would require some modifications to existing straw-laying machinery but could save around £2,000 per hectare.

Photo Credit: Gary Rogers, Geography

The post Carrot growers look to straw alternatives appeared first on Hort News on 23 July 2018.

Staffordshire root growers invest thanks to Aldi

6th generation Staffordshire farmers R & RW Bartlett have announced an expansion and eco-friendly investment in the production of carrot and parsnip crops, which the company says has been made possible due to the confidence provided by Aldi’s ‘clear forecasting.’

As well as buying new cultivation machinery, the investment will go on environmental initiatives such as low energy LED lighting and new waste and water recycling facilities. The company grows more than 8,000 tonnes of root crops a year and says the expansion will create 60 new jobs.

“Working with Aldi has enabled us to continually invest to improve efficiencies, while producing the highest quality veg,” Commercial Manager Laura Bartlett told the Fresh Produce Journal. “Their simple ways of working, close communication and clear forecasting helps us to grow year on year –in terms of our yield, employees and revenue.”

Julie Ashfield of Aldi UK added, “Our approach is to build partnerships with our suppliers that are based on trust and fairness. It’s always good to hear how this helps our farmers to invest back into their land and facilities and we look forward to working with the team in the years to come.”

Photo Caption: Roy and Rod Bartlett

Photo Credit: British Carrots

 The post Staffordshire root growers invest thanks to Aldi appeared first on Hort News on 29 March 2018.


I don’t know what your Dutch is like, but there is a translation based on one of my reports in here:

A magazine full of inspiring interviews and useful information about cultivation, trade and trends in the range of carrots. The root is in the top 10 food crops worldwide and carotenoids have a positive impact on health. With the Bejo root magazine Bejo informs its growers and relations about the root market and growing areas in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Poland, Japan and the US.

A World of Carrots in One Room

More than 550 people from around the world applied to attend Bejo’s Carrot Symposium in September 2017. In fact, so many people were interested in the event which had the theme of Taste, Health & Innovation that we had to split the event into two groups, with delegates from Eastern Europe and Asia attending on the first day, and those from the rest of the world (principally Western Europe, the Americas and Australasia) taking part on the second day.

As you would expect, networking was also a key part of the day and the breaks were packed with people catching up with old acquaintances, making new contacts and discussing the presentations in more depth. Activities also spilled over the rest of Bejo’s annual Open Days, with carrot harvesting demonstrations and a carrot taste trial also being carried out on the Demo Fields, alongside demonstrations of the latest carrot varieties from our extensive global portfolio.


Carrots are one of the most important vegetable crops globally, with China producing the largest area (130,000 ha), followed by the United States (78,000 ha), Russia (25,000 ha) and Brazil (22,250 ha). As you would expect, with so many different types and varieties available, carrots are sold in a variety of different formats around the world. However, despite the diversity, Nantes types are the most popular representing 40% of total global production. Other types such as Imperator, Flakkee, Berlicum, Chantenay and Kuroda are particularly popular in different regions (such as Kuroda in Japan) or for different uses (such as Imperator and Berlicum types for processing.

Another reason for the diversity of carrot types and production methods is that they are almost unique in being a vegetable that can be used for every part of a meal, something that was demonstrated during the lunch break when carrot soup, carrot slaw and salad, and carrot cake were all available. With carrots also forming the basis of many juice drinks and or smoothies, they really are the most versatile food available.

Globally a third of all carrot production is exported, while for countries like the Netherlands, Israel and Denmark, up to half their total crop is sold abroad. Maintaining such markets require attention to detail at all stages of the growing and supply chain, beginning with seed quality and sowing the crop. “We don’t sell carrots, we sell reliability,” stressed Israeli Crop Consultant Amos Yeger, adding that most of the country’s exports are sold to Eastern Europe, and Russia in particular.


There is increasing interest in Imperator types in different regions around the world, but Canada and the United States of America are still the main market for this type of carrot. To cater for this market Bejo is working on a dedicated Imperator breeding program, alongside its other carrot breeding, which is being led by US-based breeder carrot breeder Rob Maxwell. “We have got the shape and the eating quality, but I want to improve disease resistance, especially given the growth in organic production that we are seeing,” he said. The program has led to a number of new varieties, with a number of new varieties, including four ‘cut and peel’ types due to be released commercially over the next two years.


Dr Richard De Leth

While breeders like Rob and Bejo’s Carrot Breeding Manager Wim Zwaan are busy selecting the healthiest and best new varieties, it falls to experts in the Seed Pathology and Seed Technology departments of Bejo to ensure that the seed of these varieties which is supplied to growers around the world is both healthy, and of the highest quality, including any treatments which the grower may specify. Bejo’s Seed Pathology Research Lead, Bert Compaan, explained that a wide range of different tests are performed on every batch of seed from around the world before anything is sold. Bejo’s seed laboratories offer a range of treatments, including disinfection, coating and priming. The latest innovation is B-Mox seed treatment, a type of enhanced priming which improves germination, establishment, and ultimately crop quality, and carrots are one of the first crops in Bejo’s portfolio to benefit from the technology. “B-Mox goes further than basic priming,” explained Bert. “B-Mox is a form of enhanced priming in combination with an innovative seed coating which gives better uniformity and an improved pack out to the grown crop.”

In order for breeders and seed scientists to keep ahead of an ever-developing disease threat, it is important that plant pathologists share their latest findings. It was therefore extremely interesting to hear Dr Adrian Fox of Fera Science Ltd in the United Kingdom discussing the latest work on carrot viruses which his team has undertaken. He explained that until 2012 there had only been a number of limited studies in Europe, with most of the focus on the Carrot Motley Dwarf complex of viruses and Carrot Yellow Leaf virus.

More recently attention has turned to identifying the causes of internal browning of carrot roots which is caused by viruses and can lead to significant rejections of fresh and processed products. At the same time Carrot Necrotic Dieback Virus (which has been known as Parsnip Yellow Fleck Virus until very recently) has also become more economically important for growers. With some plants having multiple virus infections, “Trying to separate which viruses lead to which symptoms can be difficult,” Dr Fox stressed, pointing out that there is lots more work for pathologists to do in order to fully understand these complex diseases.


There are sound health reasons for including carrots in the diet, and Dutch Doctor and Nutritionist Dr Richard De Leth explained several of them. For example, carotenoids stimulate the immune system and can protect the body from the effects of sunlight and cardiovascular disease. As part of a high fibre diet carrots can also help to reduce the risk of diseases including type-2 diabetes, colon cancer and stroke.


To help promote consumption Bejo works closely with all parts of the supply chain explained Marketing & Communication Advisor Danielle Bruin. “We work with partners on various projects in the chain and our sales staff and breeders are in close contact with each other. We prefer to develop and introduce new products and concepts with our customers.” Some of these recent introductions, which are becoming more popular around the world in different markets, include coloured and snacking carrots, as well as a number of varieties suitable for Bejo’s Cool Carrot Candy concept. These are varieties such as Mokum, White Satin and Ibiza, which have their own consistent and characteristic sweet and aromatic flavour with a crunchy bite and eye-catching appearance.

Picture Credits: Bejo Zaden BV.

Read the original article here.

New Reflect gives green light for higher carrot yields

A new carrot fungicide from Syngenta, launched at the British Carrot Growers Association Carrot Open Day earlier this month, enhances green leaf and provides exceptional disease control Say the manufacturers.

Reflect combines a dual action of enhancing plant green leaf health and controlling a broad spectrum of diseases. The active ingredient isopyrazam has been shown to produce visibly greener leaf canopies. Utilising latest NDVI technology, greener crops can be measurably more effective in capturing sunlight, and converting energy to yield. Enhanced light capture also gives the potential to increase sugar carbohydrate levels in roots.

Syngenta Field Technical Manager, Pete Saunders says that green leaves and upright foliage prolongs photosynthetic activity that could lead to greater yield. “Furthermore, it will help growers to extend top lifting, which is faster and cleaner,” he added. “It also gives longer frost protection that can reduce costly straw down and improved root quality.”

Mr Saunders also said that Reflect delivered excellent control of Alternaria and Powdery Mildew, which ensured a clean and healthy crop. The strong healthy foliage would significantly reduce the crop’s susceptibility to Sclerotinia. Independent trials have shown incorporating two applications of Reflect, as the second and fourth sprays in a commercial carrot fungicide programme, retained over 50% more disease free green leaf at the end of the season, compared to using a strobilurin + triazole fungicide at the same timings.

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Plans progressing for annual carrot trials

The British Carrot Growers’ Association (BCGA) says that preparations are well underway for its 2015 Variety Demonstration and Trade Exhibition on the 1st October.

The event, organised in conjunction with HDC, will be held in Norfolk this year courtesy of growers and packers Alan Bartlett & Sons. Seven seed companies will demonstrate a total of 68 different carrot varieties alongside product demonstrations by BASF, Bayer and Syngenta and machinery demonstrations.

“Innovation is a continuing theme for this event and all the trade companies will be asked to submit their most innovative product or service prior to the event and an innovation award winner will be chosen by the BCGA R & D Committee,” explains Julie Foyster of British Growers. “Similarly, each seed company will be asked to submit their best variety for evaluation by the delegates so that a ‘best variety in show’ can be determined.”

Entry is free of charge and light refreshments will be provided. For further information and to register your attendance please contact Julie Foyster at British Carrot Growers Association: phone 01507 602427 or email Julie.foyster@britishgrowers.org.

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New cleaning unit from Tong Peal

Tong Peal Engineering has launched what it calls a new innovation in crop cleaning with the EasyClean Hydro-Sep unit.

The EasyClean Hydro-Sep has been designed for processing lines to give growers, processors and packers exceptionally effective cleaning results, while helping to reduce wear and tear on packhouse equipment by removing potentially damaging sand, stones and debris from the crop at the beginning of the handling process.

Incorporating the proven EasyClean separator, which is fitted to Tong Peal’s Caretaker grader, the EasyClean Hydro-Sep combines the separating capabilities of the EasyClean with the company’s best-selling destoner. This unique combination of a traditionally dry separator, with a Jacuzzi-style water-filled destoner creates a wet cleaning, destoning and debris removal process that allows extraction of soil, stones, haulm and debris from a wide variety of root crops including carrots, parsnips, potatoes, red beet, celeriac and more.

Crop and debris is fed into the water-filled destoner tank where stones and large clods are instantly removed as they sink to the bottom of the Jacuzzi-style tank whilst crop and other floating debris pass over to the EasyClean separator. The wet crop is then separated from any remaining debris and straw or haulm, as it is effectively extracted by the finely-tuned configuration of the EasyClean’s deformable fluted rollers and clod rollers. This initiates a pre-wash process, resulting in an exceptionally clean load of crop ready for processing, with all stones and debris removed.

The machine has been successfully trialled on carrots, parsnips and potatoes by MH Poskitts Ltd in Yorkshire.

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