TRADE AND MARKET I NG Opportunities for the potato in Belarus factory here. By abolishing the visa requirement, the President wants to make it easier for foreigners to visit the country. There are also bilateral talks with the Netherlands. This summer, there were three official visits from Belarus to the Netherlands. During these missions, attention focused on plant breeders’ rights, electronic certification and the exchange of phytosanitary knowledge, among other things. ‘Sharing knowledge comes first. Over time, this will lead to simplification of the import procedures at the Belarusian border. That’s good for Dutch exporters’, emphasises the Dutch agricultural council Meeuwes Brouwer in a news item on the website of the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality (LNV). My advice is: sell as quickly as possible when the price good’, Alexander Shamanov says. Harvest in time from the government. This strengthens the position of President Alexander Lukashenko, once director of a kolkhoz himself, among the citizens in the countryside, but according to Shamanov, it slows down the technological development of these farms. This is evident, for example, in how the cereals are marketed, whereby not the market, but the government determines the price of the cereal. However, this pricing policy does not apply to potatoes. ‘Potatoes are a cash crop for us’, Shamanov emphasises on a 100 hectare potato plot at the end of August. Here he grows the local Scarb variety, which covers 50 percent of the total area of Belarus. The harvest of these potatoes is partly for the personal use of the farm workers on the kolkhoz and partly for a regular customer in Russia. This trade is possible because Belarus is part of the Eurasian Economic Union. This union, where free movement of products takes place, consists of the Russian Federation, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Armenia and Belarus. It is important for Belarus to develop further in the field of potatoes, because the cultivation in neighbouring Ukraine is also developing. This also applies to Kazakhstan, partly as a result of the plans by Farm Frites to start a French-fry Shamanov tells us that the kolkhoz where he works has a total size of 9,500 hectares, of which 7,000 hectares are suitable as arable land. With 3,100 hectares, cereal is the largest crop, followed by maize, rapeseed and sugar beet. In addition to arable farming, the kolkhoz also has a dairy farm. Walking over the fertile field with a well-developed potato crop, Shamanov explains that the preceding crop is always winter wheat. In order to allow the crop to develop optimally, in addition to the regular cow dung, Shamanov also applies 200 kilograms of pure potash and 60 to 80 kilograms of phosphate. This application is based on The four-wheel drive Lada is the standard means of transport for agronomists in Belarus. Most of the 235,500 hectares are cultivated by Belarusians in small gardens, the famous dachas, and spread all over the country. Here, disease and weed pressure are often very high. Potato World 2018 • number 4 31 Pagina 30

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