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Best in Class for Potato Partners


The very best Australian and New Zealand potato growers and agronomists recently descended upon the Barossa Valley for Syngenta’s inaugural Potato Partners Academy.

The three day information sharing event was part of Syngenta’s investment in supporting innovation and education in potatoes and incorporated the Academy theory sessions and practical Learning Centre demonstrations in the field, for the just over 50 growers, distributors and industry guests.

A full program, attendees heard from a range of guest speakers including from Syngenta’s highly experienced and specialised technical team, to product leads, to field biologists, and even a short workshop on advancing their professional development and business skills.

A live cross to Syngenta’s Global Research & Development facility, Jealott’s Hill in the UK, gave those attending a first-hand experience of how Syngenta’s formulation chemists develop new products for the Australasian potato industry.

Syngenta Australia Product Lead – Potatoes and Vegetables, Richard Packard, said the interaction and engagement of attendees across the 3 days was impressive.

“One of the main drivers for the Academy was to bring together potato growers and our customers from across Australia and New Zealand together in the one place, to provide them the opportunity to see our technology and new product innovations first-hand, performing in the field.”

Les Murdoch, the Agricultural Manager for one of Australia’s leading food manufacturers, Simplot, was in attendance and said he found the event to a valuable experience.

“Over the last few days, we’ve learnt so much. There is some technology here that I’d never seen before. Being exposed to that, really opens your eyes up to what’s on the horizon and how it will help us to advance our business.”

Les said he found the knowledge gained on topics like effective product application and the screening process of products before they hit the market to be valuable.

“It’s about understanding what tests and screens products go through before they hit the market, and being confident that they are safe, so we can assure our customers too.”

“Interacting with other people within our industry at events like this is really valuable too because sharing information helps us all to advance, and become more efficient and sustainable,” Les said.

Check out all the highlights from the Academy and Learning Centre by watching the short video below.