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Grants for small research projects

Member-led Small Grants from CUPGRA

CUPGRA can make available small grants to fund member-led potato research

Examples of this would include:

  • early-stage, pump-priming or investigative work

  • reviews of current problems and issues

  • £20,000/annum total expected annual awards        

  • £2,000 to £20,000 individual grant value      


Applications are open to anyone. Grants are subject to: 

  • Providing benefit and good value to CUPGRA membership

  • Meeting sound industry and science criteria

  • Having a good communication mechanism for the work

  • Approval of the CUPGRA Executive

Applications should be made using the CUPGRA Small Grants application form and returned to Kate Pottle at

Summary UPDATE Member-led Small Grants from CUPGRA


Note, at the CUPGRA Exec meeting in May, there had been no update on planting due to the season running late.


1.Potato Partnership -PCN, Exec Member James Lee

Continuation of the 2022 work to evaluate a future without Nemathorin.  A fully randomised statistically tested trial.

Evaluation of differing commercial varieties and their yield potential combined with their ability to limit or reduce PCN levels when grown commercially.  With and without Velum Prime.


2. Martyn Cox and Graham Tomalin-Wireworm

Using high risk sites.

1.           To investigate correlation between Glycoalkaloid and Reducing Sugar levels in potato varieties, and their susceptibility to wireworm damage on a high-pressure site.

2.           To produce robust data that will build on existing studies to improve understanding of variety choice to optimise returns on high-risk wireworm sites.

3.           To explore the use of Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) as a companion crop as a tool for reduction of wireworm damage in a potato crop.

Martyn is aiming to do some of the specific asks from Branston within ‘his ‘trial, in order to include and not to duplicate work.

At this stage, unsure which part of the Branston trial work plan has been incorporated.


  1. To explore linkage between wireworm activity (as measured by bait trapping), tuber feeding damage, environmental variables and tuber properties during the potato growing season.

  2. To evaluate the opportunity for soil scanning to detect and map wireworm incidence during autumn field cultivations.

  3. To continue replicated variety trials of 8-10 cultivars with contrasting levels of reported wireworm sensitivity.

  4. To identify differences in sugars and glycoalkaloid concentrations of low and high resistance varieties

  5. To evaluate cover crop combinations with possible benefits of reducing wireworm populations


3. Mark Stalham’s MH work.


Aims to inform Growers better about risks vs weather and soil conditions for spraying MH, thus, to optimise MH uptake.


Note, with thanks to David Almond, who has engaged with Antonia at UP and has got the sampling charges FOC, for residues of MH.


Maximising the rate of uptake, compared to a Reference crop: ensure as many tubers as possible on each plant uptake adequate MH to control sprouting for long periods relies on ensuring the plant is photosynthesizing rapidly. Better information on the timing optimal window for MH application under different levels of water stress would reduce the period of reliance on expensive electricity or sprout suppressants in store, save growers money and reduce the carbon footprint of the crop and the risk of environmental contamination by sprout suppressants.

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