It is estimated to produce 20 metric tons of potatoes per hectare in the country with certified seed through the project of the National Institute of Agricultural Research (INIAP) and the Army Polytechnic School (ESPE). So far, 2% of potato producers use certified seeds, so the government estimates that its use would improve by 150%.
INIAP executive director Juan Manuel Dominguez said that with the certified seed production costs are lowered and small farmers benefit from this. For example, the cost per quintal of the certified seed will go from $ 33 to $ 25, which would result in a savings of $ 320 per hectare. With this reduction is also expected to improve earnings of producers between $ 500 and $ 1,000 on average.
In Sangolquí, the automated greenhouse was inaugurated in El Prado hacienda, the same is a biotechnology laboratory where the seeds will be produced through clean plants that will be carefully selected and reproduced in vitro (in test tubes).
Potato is a main food source in the diet of Ecuadorians, as each person consumes about 24 kilos a year. It is estimated that 300 thousand tons were sold in 2014, which represented revenues of $ 75 million.