Thursday, 19 December 2019
With CIPC no longer an option in the sprout suppression toolbox for the 2020 storage season, growers are considering which alternatives are available to them. To make best use of alternative sprout suppressants, an integrated approach to storage will be required - one that takes into account the store environment, varietal traits, end market use and more.
Delegates who signed up to the Storage Workshop at the recent AHDB Agronomists Conference had the opportunity to navigate through these different options and figure out solutions to some of the challenges they will be faced with post-CIPC.
Groups worked through four different storage scenarios, each including a specific crop for a specified end-market, a specific storage environment, CIPC-free vs CIPC history, different ventilation systems, and a range of issues of relevant to this current season, e.g. wet crop.
Several groups wisely opted for using maleic hydrazide for sprout control, as part of a processing storage strategy but, for the fresh market, improving store airflow to make better use of refrigeration was seen as a more viable solution. In another scenario, varietal dormancy took centre stage as a long-term solution. Costs of alternative control regimes were also addressed; it was acknowledged that these will be more expensive than CIPC but that these costs can be minimised by implementing an integrated approach to storage. Beyond this, one key message that came through strongly was to gain a sound understanding and overview of the whole supply chain to inform decision-making, by talking to all the stakeholders involved e.g. customer, chemical contractor or store manager.
Will you be coming across some of the different elements presented in these storage scenarios? Are you unsure as to where to start making changes to your current storage strategy? We recommend that you sign up for a visit from one of our Storage Network partners for a 1-to-1 meeting in your store and guidance on how to approach your storage strategy for the 2020 storage season.