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Chile: In search of potato varieties adaptable to extreme conditions

The occurrence of extreme weather events such as the frosts in the central southern part of the country starting in September are an example of what is known as climate change, said Maria Teresa Pino, coordinator of Fontagro's Adapting potato production systmes to climate change project and researcher at INIA.
In this context, the INIA-Chile, INIA-Uruguay consortium and the International Potato Centre (CIP) in Peru, have joined forces in a research initiative that seeks to maintain and improve the competitiveness of potato production systems in the event of climate change, by selecting and developing genotypes with increased tolerance to drought and high temperatures.
Fundamentally, the research was designed to determine the potential impact that climate change, in the region, can have on wheat and potatoes, as well as making the genotypes and genes, which are tolerant to drought and high temperatures, available for each country's improvement programs. As well as this, it is for producers so that they can obtain competitive returns in this the new climate scenario. The research also allows there to be a regional body of work and discussion of climate change.

During the project, researchers worked on the development of a model "to identify the potential impact that the new climatic conditions would have on the potato production system as well as the most vulnerable areas of production in terms of drought and rising temperatures," said the researcher.


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