More than 20 people, about half of them commercial growers, attended a recent sweetpotato growers meeting in Hilo organized by CTAHR’s Sharon Motomura-Wages (Tropical Plant and Soil Sciences
) and Kiersten Akahoshi (Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences
The workshop featured Christopher Clark and Arthur Villordon from Louisiana State University, who discussed their program in Louisiana to produce virus-tested sweetpotato planting materials for commercial growers. Hawai‘i County administrator Susan Miyasaka talked about recent research results that demonstrated it was possible to nearly double yield by using virus-tested ‘Okinawan’ planting materials rather than those from a commercial source.
Other speakers included Marisa Wall (USDA) and Ishakh Pulakkatu-Thodi (PEPS). Virus-tested, tissue-cultured ‘Okinawan’ plants were distributed to growers who attended the meeting.
And participants visited area farms like this one, where Motomura-Wages and Assistant Professor James Keach examined tubers.