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Potatoes - Essay Example

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It is stable diet for 60% worldwide population (Kohli, 2009). The potato is an integral part of the economy, the agriculture, and world food security…
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Download file to see previous pages Its Latin name is Solanum tuberosum L. and is a perennial plant i.e. present at all seasons of the year. (Rhodes, 2009). In the genus Solanum, Petota comprises of around 190 wild tuber-bearing species, and are extensively spread in the Americas, from the South Western USA to Southern Chile and Argentina and from sea level to the highlands of the Andes Mountains (Visser et al., 2009). A universally accepted taxonomy does not exist for cultivated potatoes. The interested part of the potato crop plant is a tuber, the enlarged end of a stolon, or underground stem. Externally tuber appears as tan to purple color while; its flesh is normally white or light yellow, except for some purple Andrean potatoes. The tuber buds off externally that can sprout into new crops. These buds or eyes function like a fruit seeds which give rise to new plants (Rhodes, 2009).
Cross breeding techniques between common potato varieties and wild potato varieties are used to produce crop plants with desirable traits such as broad spectrum resistances to pests and diseases, tolerances to frost and drought, high yielding and highly nutritious crops in adverse biotic and abiotic stimuli, high quality storage characteristics, easy processing etc (Visser et al., 2009). In addition to this, developed countries are also emphasizing on organically prepared and processed potato.
The production of diverse and abundant food to sustain the demand of increasing population is the need of the day. The supply of abundant, cheapest, diverse and safest food becomes an immense challenge in developing world. In this regard, root and tuber crops can contribute significantly. The annual growth rates of potato production are increasing by 4.5 million tons per year (Visser et al., 2009). It tops the list in non-grain food commodity, while secures third position as an important food crop after wheat and rice (Visser et al., 2009). It has been reported that in 2007, 325 million ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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