Abertay University is hoping that its new project using artificial intelligence (AI) technology could be the key to speed up the process of growing potatoes.
A Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) between the University and UK-based potato seed supplier Agrico UK will use the AI tech to help with potato growth, making it more manageable in a shorter time-frame.
The future plan for the £118,000 project, funded by Innovate UK and the Scottish Funding Council, is to carry out screening techniques that will help select potatoes with clear consumer appeal and qualities that make them easy to grow according to digit.fyi
It currently takes more than ten years to develop new breeds of potato, and things such as disease resistance, tolerance to heat, drought and taste are factors that must be taken into consideration when growing.
Commenting on the KTP, Dr Steven Muir from Agrico UK Ltd said: “This project is quite unique and uses new techniques to allow us to better predict successful varieties of potato for consumers. We have been involved in successful KTPs in the past and have found them to be extremely beneficial.”
Agrico UK Executive Director Archie Gibson said: “Integrating data science in combination with sensory and consumer science is an important part of our vision, and is key to our ambitions for the future.”
Abertay has strong links with the food and drink industry, and the expertise of its academic staff is highly sought after by industry, professionals, and the academic community.
Dr John Grigor, from Abertay’s Division of Engineering and Food Science, commented: “This project is scheduled to last for 30-months, and we are delighted to be working with Agrico UK Ltd on something that has the potential to make a real difference.”