Potato Variety Management Institute
All potato breeding selections, referred to as clones, go through a strenuous evaluation process before they are released as varieties. This process can take as many as 15 years and involves hundreds of tests. Tens of thousands of inferior selections are eliminated in the process, leaving only the best clones. Advanced clones have a high probability of being released as new varieties. These clones are evaluated by growers and users and require industry acceptance as part of the process prior to release. The Tri-State breeding program works closely with the industry and growers to evaluate all aspects of each advanced clone using a system of Material Transfer Agreements, referred to as MTAs. These allow for growers to get advanced lines, test them under field circumstances and allow for enough quantity to be built up so evaluations of processing traits can be considered under actual plant conditions. This stage of grower evaluation is conducted over several years while the advanced clone is still part of the Western Regional Trials.