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Rooting for tubers

The potato is the third most important food crop in the world (©FAO/Giulio Napolitano)
The potato is the third most important food crop in the world
©FAO/Giulio Napolitano

The importance of the potato as a major crop in the fight against poverty and malnutrition has been re-affirmed at a meeting-of-minds in Peru, as part of the UN's International Year of the Potato (IYP) 2008.

Tuber experts from around the world gathered at the 'Potato Science for the Poor' conference in Cusco in March, to discuss ways to increase potato production and profitability in developing countries. Co-sponsored by the International Potato Center (CIP) and FAO, the conference marks the beginning of a year-long drive to raise awareness and production of the humble spud. Pamela Anderson, director general of International Potato Center (CIP), said: "As a global community it is time for us to come together and define an agenda which focuses explicitly on the poor and the hungry. This is an opportunity, greater than we've ever seen before, to use this crop for the dual purposes of guaranteeing food security but also generating income." Further IYP-related events will be held in Italy, Poland, Romania, Scotland and Switzerland.

Date published: May 2008


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