Pakistan imports 20,000 tons of potato seeds every year. To change this situation, Potato Research Institute Sahiwal is making efforts to develop local potato varieties. “The institute has create the potato varieties including PRI, Sadaf, Sahiwal, Cosmo, and Ijaz 22. Some of the seeds grown in Sahiwal produce as much as foreign breeds, and some produce even more,” added Syed.
Pakistan potato is exported mainly to CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries like Russia, Azerbaijan, Iraq, UAE, Oman, the entire gulf and Singapore, Malaysia in the Far East. "I hope that we can expand our export to more countries in the future." Waheed said.
Syed believes that China is a potentially big market for Pakistani potato, because the price of potato in China is higher, especially from January to April every year. "We can say that potatoes are cultivated and harvested in Pakistan in some form around the whole year. We have three crops of potatoes. The first is called Autumn crop. We sow it in October and harvest it in February. The second is an imported variety, which is harvested from January to April. The third is the hill crop cultivated from April to September," Syed explained.