2004 USPB/SFA Chip Trial Results
By Dr. Donald Halseth
Associate Professor, Department of Horticulture at Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.
National yield and chipping trials, funded by the U.S. Potato Board (USPB) and managed by the Snack Food Association, were conducted by growers, processors and university researchers in six states in 2004. These trials evaluated 10 advanced breeding lines with excellent chipping potential from seven U.S. potato breeding programs.
The trials involved collecting information, including yield stability, specific gravity (dry matter level), tuber and chip defects, and disease and pest susceptibilities or resistances. Lines were evaluated for chipping ability directly from field harvest and also from short- and long-term cold storage. However, the most important product of these trials is that they facilitate the exchange of information and foster coordinated efforts between growers, processors, extension and researchers.
At each trial location, the regional coordinator selects the cooperating chip grower and a cooperating chip processor (Table 1). These trials are designed to simulate a mini-commercial trial, when growers plant seed of each entry in one of their fields and manage it with standard commercial cultural practices. At harvest, samples are graded for yield, size distribution, defects and dry matter.
The potatoes also are chipped within 48 hours to evaluate out-of-the-field processing characteristics. In the northern trial locations, where potatoes are typically stored for four to eight months, samples are placed in grower storages for out-of-storage chipping evaluation the following late winter or early spring.
USPB/SFA Chip Trial Cooperators for 2004
Trial Coordinator Chip Grower Chip Processor
Dr. Chad Hutchinson Univ. of Florida Res. Farm Utz Quality Foods
Univ. of Florida Hastings, FL Hanover, Pa.
Dr. William Lamont Mr. James Hite Snyder of Berlin
Penn State Patton, PA Berlin, Pa.
Mr. Chris Long Mr. Greg Perkins Herr Foods, Inc.
Michigan State Stanton, Mich. Nottingham, Pa.
Dr. Steve Love Aberdeen R & E Center R & G Potatoes
Univ. of Idaho Aberdeen, Idaho American Falls, Idaho
Dr. Ed Plissey Mr. John Dorman Frito-Lay, Inc.
Bio-Ag Res., Maine Exeter, Maine Dayville, Conn.
Mr. Duane Preston Oberg Farms Barrel O’ Fun
UMN / NDSU Hopple, N.D. Perham, Minn.
Potatoes are much more site-specific in their range of environmental adaptation than they appear. Lines often perform significantly better in the region where they were first selected by the breeding program which developed them. Only a few potato varieties, such as Atlantic, consistently perform well over a wide range of geographical and environmental conditions. Thus, the Atlantic variety is used in our SFA/USPB Chip Trials as a standard for stable yield and high dry matter.
High specific gravity (dry matter) is a very important trait for processing potatoes. The higher the dry matter, the less heat and frying oil it takes to make chips and also the higher the conversion ratio of finished product from fresh product. However, potato lines with higher dry matter are often much more susceptible to tuber bruising, resulting in increased defects in the finished chips. Disease, such as scab or soft rot, also impact tuber quality. Potato varieties also differ in their ability to make light-colored chips, either processed directly from field harvest or from storage.
The goal of these trials is to identify new potato lines with the best combination possible of the above-discussed traits. Notes on the 10 lines tested in 2004 are provided in Table 2 along with identification of the breeding program that developed them.
The naming and release of a new potato variety does not assure that it will survive the critical test of meeting “commercial acceptance” by the industry. Because initial line selection and development involve small-scale, often individual-handheld procedures, it is difficult to select for traits that might be impacted by large-volume agriculture.
When a new variety is subjected to the more rigid tests of large-scale production, including mechanical seed cutting, planting, harvesting, handling and long-term storage, significant defects — if they exist within the variety — are more likely to appear. Also, to ensure a more rapid and successful adoption, research must be conducted on optimal production practices, such as fertilization, spacing or storage temperatures, specific for each new line. Thus it is very important to have industry involvement as early as possible in variety development, as exemplified by the USPB/SFA Chip Trials.
Characteristics of the 2004 USPB/SFA Chip Trials Entries
Advanced Seedlings Characteristics Seed Provided By
A91790-13 A selection from a cross between Chipeta x Ivory Crisp in 1991. It has midseason maturity, med-high specific gravity (8 points below Atlantic), high yield in Idaho and Mich. (but a high % of culls in Maine and Pa.) and ability to chip from 40-42F. storage. Susceptible to net necrosis. Dr. Rich Novy, USDA — Aberdeen, Aberdeen, Idaho



A selection from a cross between Atlantic x Maine Chip in 1996. It has midseason maturity, high specific gravity (6 points below Atlantic), lower yield (89% of Atlantic), but the best, consistent field chip color of 2004 trials. Moderately resistant to scab and net necrosis, but susceptible to verticillium wilt.

Dr. Zenaida Ganga, Univ. of Maine, Presque Isle, Maine


B1240-1 A selection from a 1991 cross between B0172-22 x B0186-3. It has late maturity, medium specific gravity, and good yield potential. Tolerant to early blight and internal heat necrosis, resistant to CPB. Line dropped due to inconsistent chipping, scab susceptibility, and a severely indented apical end. Dr. Kathleen Haynes, USDA — Beltsville, Beltsville, Md.


A selection made from a cross between Snowden x Chaleur in 1993. It has midseason maturity, oblong shape, medium specific gravity (7 points below Atlantic), and low yield (80% of Atlantic). It is intermediate in scab susceptibility and has chipped from 42F storage.

Dr. Dave Douches, Michigan State, East Lansing, Mich.


MSJ461-1 A selection from a 1997 cross between Tollocan x NY88. It has late maturity, low specific gravity (10 points below Atlantic), and good yield potential (98% of Atlantic). Good chip color, tubers attractive enough for tablestock, foliar late blight resistance but scab susceptible. Dr. Dave Douches, Michigan State, East Lansing, Mich.




A selection from a 1984 cross between Yankee Chipper x Norchip. Late maturity, very low specific gravity (15 points below Atlantic) and a fair yield (92% of Atlantic). It has low sugar accumulation and chips from 42F storage. Susceptible to silver scurf, chain setting noted with heat stress, and blackspot susceptible.

Dr. Susie Thompson, North Dakota State, Fargo, N.D.


ND5822C-7 A selection from a 1994 cross between ND4103-2 x Dakota Pearl. Maturity is late to very late. Specific gravity is medium (8 points below Atlantic), and a very high yield potential (133% of Atlantic). Bright skin, uniform size and shape, and chips from 42F storage. Susceptibility to hollow heart, particularly in large potatoes. Dr. Susie Thompson, North Dakota State, Fargo, N.D.
NY132 A selection from a 1995 cross between Eva x Pike. Maturity is late, high specific gravity (3 points below Atlantic), and medium yield potential (91% of Atlantic). Attractive tubers, bright skin, very good scab resistance and very good chip color. Occasional levels of internal necrosis and hollow heart, but less than Atlantic. Dr. Walter De Jong, Cornell Univ., Ithaca, N.Y.
A selection from a cross in 1985 between Wischip x FYF85. It has late maturity, high specific gravity (1 point below Atlantic) and a medium-to-high yield (104% of Atlantic). High, early tuber bulking rate of well-sized tubers. Good resistance to early blight and some scab resistance but may have some pressure bruise susceptibility. Good chip color. Dr. Horia Groza and Bryan Bowen, Univ. of Wisconsin, Rhinelander, Wis.
W1773-7 A selection from a 1991 cross between Steuben x RHL 167. Maturity is mid-season, low specific gravity (9 points below Atlantic), good yield potential (100% of Atlantic) and good chip color from three months at 48F. Excellent internal quality, round, smooth tubers and fair scab resistance. Will be dropped due to no significant improvement over Snowden in Wis. Dr. Horia Groza and Bryan Bowen, Univ. of Wisconsin, Rhinelander, Wis.