With the support and financing of the Foundation for Agrarian Innovation (FIA), scientists from institutions such as the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC), the Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA) and the Servicio Agrícola y Ganadero (SAG) are developing a Integrated management system for emerging diseases that are affecting potato cultivation in Chile and the world.

The Agricultural Research Institute (INIA) recently published Newsletter No. 223 "Potato Mop Top Virus (PMTV)" and No. 224 "The Powdery Scab of the Potato", in which it provides recommendations for the correct diagnosis of these diseases and integrated management through practices such as the use of legal seed, a good choice of soil, use of less susceptible cultivars and avoiding conditions that favor them, among other measures.

Both publications are part of the PYT-2016-0096 project “Development of a technological package that allows the sustainable management of emerging diseases caused by viruses in potato crops in Chile: Mop top virus (PMTV) and necrotic races of Virus Y de la potato (PVY), which threaten the production of potato seed tuber in Chile ”, executed by the Pontificia Universidad Católica (PUC), with the support of the Foundation for Agrarian Innovation (FIA), the INIA and the Agricultural and Livestock Service (SAG).

Ivette Acuña, phytopathologist at INIA Remehue and author of both publications, explained that the disease called Mop Top of the potato is caused by the virus known as PMTV (Potato Mop Top Virus). "This disease has a quarantine character for some countries and is of great concern today, because its spread has been increasing in recent years, as a result of the poor quality of the seed used by most farmers, the absence of varieties resistant to said pathogen and inefficient chemical control ”, indicated the INIA professional.

Regarding potato powdery scab (also called powdery scab, powdery scab and powdery scab), he pointed out that it is caused by a protozoan, which in addition to causing this disease is a vector of the Mop Top virus.

He added that “in Chile, this disease was reported for the first time in 1936, attacking the papal sites of Llanquihue and Chiloé. Nowadays it is acquiring more and more importance due to the devastating economic losses that it produces, since it causes reduction in yields and low quality of the final product ”. He also emphasized that "currently powdery scabies is a disease that is increasing and can become a limitation for the main potato-producing areas, especially in the southern part of our country, especially in crops under irrigation conditions."

Ivette Acuña reported that “to counteract this situation, specialists from the Catholic University, INIA and SAG, with the support of FIA, are working on the development of a technological package for the sustainable management of these emerging diseases caused by viruses in potato, which considers integrated control practices, such as the use of legal seed, varietal resistance studies, chemical control and vector management, among other actions that producers can carry out ”.

More information:

Potato Mop Top Virus (PMTV)


Powdery Potato Scab


About INIA
The Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA) is the main institution for agri-food research, development and innovation in Chile. Linked to the Ministry of Agriculture, it has a national presence and a work team of more than 1,000 highly qualified people. It executes an average of 400 projects per year around 5 strategic areas: Climate Change, Sustainability, Food of the Future, Emerging Technologies, and Extension and Training of Capacities. These initiatives contribute to the sustainable agri-food development of the country, creating value and proposing innovative solutions to farmers, strategic partners and the population, generating a social profitability that varies between 15% and 25%, for each peso invested in each of their projects.
INIA, more than 55 years leading the sustainable agri-food development of Chile.
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Press Contact: Luis Opazo, MCE Journalist in Charge of Communications at INIA Remehue. Cel. +56997005745 e-mail: lopazo@www.inia.cl