Allan Siano is a Senior Science Research Specialist at the government of the Philippines, undertaking a PhD programme in Horticultural Science at the School of Agriculture and Environment of Massey University, New Zealand.
Siano says recent extreme weather events such as heat and drought, and unprecedented heavy rain have resulted in reduced bulking and encouraged rotting of tubers in major potato production areas in New Zealand. These have contributed to an estimated 25% loss in production by the New Zealand potato sector last season.
Siano’s PhD study was initiated to investigate the effects of abiotic stresses associated with climate change on the yield and tuber quality of potatoes in New Zealand. Research questions include: is there early evidence that abiotic stresses associated with climate change are already affecting potato production in New Zealand? How does it affect the yield and tuber quality? And do commercial potato cultivars show different usceptibility to key abiotic stresses?
Read more about Allan Siano’s work in an article published in the launch issue of Global Potato News. He can be reached at A.Siano@massey.ac.nz for more details and input to his study from interested parties around the world.