The role of aphids as vectors of potato viruses is of concern to the Scottish seed potato industry. SASA operates a national network of suction traps collecting information about aphid abundance and movement, and providing advice on the risk of virus transmission and the need for aphid control.
The European Union Common Catalogue (EUCC) for potato contains over 1,000 varieties. Each year member states add varieties to the list after they have undergone Distinctness, Uniformity and Stability (DUS) testing according to international guidelines. Identification of cultivars by morphological characteristics is a highly skilled and time-consuming task.
The genus Dickeya was previously known as Erwinia chrysanthemi. There are two significant potato pathogens within this genus currently affecting Europe; Dickeya dianthicola and ‘Dickeya solani’. D. dianthicola has never been found on Scottish potatoes. ‘D. solani’ emerged in Europe around 2005-2006. It is highly aggressive on potato, causing rapid wilting and blackleg-like symptoms across wide environmental conditions.