Understanding climate change impacts on potato market quality
Changes in the global climate caused by increased emissions of greenhouse gases can have a profound effect on crop production. While increasing atmospheric carbon levels can have a fertilization effect on crops plants, increased surface temperatures and altered precipitation patterns can have a negative impact overall production. One understudied area is how climate change impacts not only quantity, but quality of crop production. This includes both nutritional and market quality.
Michigan is the #1 chip-producing state in the country, providing tubers for potato chip production nation-wide. Understanding how elevated carbon dioxide and temperature effect the market quality of elite chip-processing cultivars is work done in the Leisner lab. Previous work has examined how different simulations for future climate in Michigan will impact tuber quality and production, as well as how seasonal changes in climate in Michigan will impact the ability of farmers to store tubers between growing seasons.