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P2001342: Provision of aphid yellow water trap counts for the potato


Potato Virus Y (PVY) is a serious threat to high grade seed potato production because even low levels of PVY will downgrade seed. Not all aphid species transmit virus to the crop and those that do transmit do so with varying levels of efficiency. The peach-potato aphid (Myzus persicae) is the most efficient virus vector. Some vector species will colonise potatoes however, many will simply move on as potatoes are not a suitable food source.


AHDB supports the provision of information on the numbers and activity of aphids. This provides levy payers with an indication of whether their crops are at risk from insect attack/virus transmission and informs decisions about whether to spray, what insecticide to use and how frequently to apply it. AHDB support ensures that the aphid information is provided in a timely and easily accessible way to the whole of the industry.


Primary Objective

National monitoring and reporting of the aphids that are a major threat to GB seed potato production.



The aim of this work will be to provide information on aphid numbers and activity in GB from at least April – end August each year. The aphid information will be collected from individual yellow water traps (YWT) placed in up to 100 potato fields across GB and be made available via a user-friendly, open access website. The main components of the work required are listed below.


  • Source and provide the YWT and sample kits with instructions for the set-up, emptying and posting of the samples
  • Liaise with levy payers / agronomists to deploy 100 YWT and sample kits
  • Ensure traps are spread geographically across the seed growing regions of GB
  • Manage the interaction with levy payers and agronomists who are provided with a single YWT per field, so that traps are emptied on an approximately weekly basis and samples sent to the organisation identifying the aphids
  • Identify and analyse the aphids in the samples
  • Maintain the results and report them on an open access Aphid Monitoring website and via email alerts.
  • Manage the website contact database and communication (text / email alert system) for alerting growers and agronomists about aphid numbers, ensuring it is compliant with GDPR
  • Produce an API to which AHDB has access. At some stage in the contract AHDB may use the API to host the service on its website.
  • Produce a summary report for each season


Applicants must provide details of the aphid species to be identified, the turnaround times for identification of aphids once the samples have been received and the details of the frequency of updates to the Aphid Monitoring website. They must also describe how the traps will be deployed to ensure even spread across the seed potato growing areas of GB and how the results will be communicated to growers / agronomists. Guidance on the design and branding of the communications will be provided by AHDB.


 Budget and duration

AHDB has set aside a total budget for the two years of up to £100,000.

There is  an option to extend for an additional 12 months.


Application procedure

Applicants should complete an AHDB Research and KE Application Form – Full Proposal Large, referring to the guidance notes to aid completion.


Applications are made on the basis of the AHDB Terms and Conditions for the Purchase of Goods and Services  and any organisation/business receiving funding shall comply with the terms and conditions specified in the document. AHDB will not be held responsible for any expenses or losses incurred by applicants in the preparation of an application(s).


Deadlines for the application procedure and project delivery


12:00 on 28.02.20

Make an electronic submission to

Receipt will be the time of receiving email.

Applications reviewed

Submissions will be evaluated internally by AHDB and with Industry Representatives By 06.03.20

Applicants informed of outcome

By 08/03/20

Project commences

By 01.04.20

Project completion

By 31.03.22, or 31.3.23 if extended for a third year.



If you have a specific question related to this call please email  As part of the open tender process AHDB cannot discuss specific project details prior to submission of a proposal. All responses to questions will be anonymised and published on the Procurement area of the AHDB website.

Evaluation of submissions

A number of criteria will used to judge the quality of the submissions (value in brackets indicates weight in assessment process) Note that the score sheet below will be used to evaluate this tender, in place of the standard one for AHDB research calls.  


Project Title: Provision of aphid yellow water trap counts for the potato industry


Section 1: Management of project hosts  (3x weighting, total 30 points; PASS THRESHOLD = 15)

Ability to find hosts for yellow water traps in locations which match the distribution of seed potato production in Britain.

Ability to reliably communicate with hosts and supply the traps.



Section Score:

Section Total:

Section2: Accuracy and timeliness of reporting (3x weighting, total 30 points)

Facilities and staff capability to process the trap contents accurately on receipt, and to report on the findings swiftly throughout the season.

Risk management.



Section Score:

Section Total:

SECTION 3: Digital capacity (4x weighting, total 40 points)

Ability to manage the website and keep it up to date, including compliance with GDPR.

Ability to create an API so hosting of the service can be transferred to the AHDB website if required.

Risk management.



Section Score:

Section Total:

Total Points            out of 100

Recommend for Funding           Yes / No

Weightings are set to reflect the importance of specific criteria, any proposal failing to achieve a specified threshold may be rejected. They have been set to ensure appropriate standards are met.


The specification is explained below in the context of the previous website; for the sake of clarity. This does not restrict the opportunity to the previous contractor.

API specification

Essentially there are some pages on the web site

That contain dynamic map , graph and tabular data. these pages whilst very functional will not In the long term

Be migratable to as the styling is incompatible with AHDB branding.

In order to resolve this AHDB proposes that an API is created that will allow AHDB access to the data that is used to power the dynamic elements of the following page elements

From this data AHDB can create dashboards that offer the same functionality as the current pages however In the correct branding that is consistent with the look and feel of

Map data API function

On the home page there is a map that allows user to drill down into specific areas of the country for a detailed view of the water trap data in that area.

The page also has some UI elements that allow user to adjust the view of the data plotted on the map to a point in time so they can historically see data.

We would require the API expose all data necessary to replicate this functionary In a json format.

Drilled down regional data

Clicking on a region of the map above takes the user to a page that displays data for the chosen region, again the view of the data displayed can be altered by adjusting the date filtering UI elements.

Other data elements on this page included a data table that gives a breakdown of the result for each site in the region and a graph that shows the Average virus pressure per trap in the region.

The graph also contains a link to a page that displays several graphs for Aphid species that are specific to the region.

We would require the API expose all data necessary to replicate this functionality in a json format

The above API will then allow AHDB to fully migrate all of the content from the existing site on to

The supplier of the data will continue to receive revenue from AHDB for the hosting an maintenance of the API.

The existing site can then be phased out once AHDB is in position to migrate all the content.