Europeans Hail Innovative British Potato Storage System
Restrain wins PotatoEurope Innovation Award for 2009.
[UKPRwire, Wed Sep 23 2009] A British potato and onion storage system has been hailed as 'the greatest breakthrough in the seed potato sector' by judges at the PotatoEurope Conference 2009 in the Netherlands. Restrain, the natural anti-sprouting system, won the prestigious PotatoEurope Innovation Award for 2009 in the face of stiff oppostion. The award was announced during the conference, at Emmeloord, on 8 September 2009. Mr Dirk Garos, Restrain Company's Dutch representative, received the award from Mrs Renée Bergkamp, director-general for enterprise and innovation at the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs.
The Innovation Award judges base their decision on innovation, market potential and sustainability. The Restrain Generator produces low levels of the natural ethylene gas to prevent potatoes from sprouting, leaving no residue on the tuber. After a full day's deliberation it was proclaimed the undisputed winner of the award. "This product is truly is a breakthrough," the judges commented. "It is very innovative: a natural and environmentally-friendly, anti-sprouting control is very necessary and welcome; it is something the entire potato sector has been waiting for."
Judges also noted that Restrain had been tested and approved by the Dutch Board for the Authorisation of Plant Protection Products and Biocides. Last but not least, they said, Restrain Generator has a comparable cost to traditional chemical anti-sprouting control. "In summary, it has a very positive influence on the processing of potatoes," they said.
Restrain Company's UK Manager James Thorburn commented: "We are utterly delighted to win this award. It's a boost for British technology and agriculture, especially since we were up against such strong competition from companies based on mainland Europe. It should also have a big impact on the Restrain System's export sales."
The Restrain Company is 100% British owned. For more information visit the website at www.restrain.eu.com
The PotatoEurope Innoavation Award Judges:
Mr Th.A.M. Meijer, chairman of the Main Board Arable Products from the Netherlands and chairman of this jury. The other members were Mr R. van Diepen, managing director of NAO (Dutch Potato Organisation), Mr J. Delleman, chief editor of Potato World Magazine and Mr J. Hak, chairman of the association of Dutch manufacturers of machinery for food processing and packaging as well as managing director of Hak & Partners B.V.
The Award runners up:
The second prize went to NAK, the Dutch General Inspection Service for agricultural seeds and seed potatoes for their Direct Tuber Testing (DTT). Third prize was awarded to Dacom B.V. with their Dacom Watersave Sensor System.
Restrain – background:
In 1999 Greenvale AP, the UK's largest fresh potato supplier, began tests on a chemical-free anti-sprouting method for storing potatoes and onions. Aided by ICA Equipment & Instruments, the company developed a patented system called Restrain. The Restrain technology uses natural ethylene gas for anti sprouting control of onions and potatoes during storage. The success of this project made it clear that a separate company was necessary and in 2003 Restrain Company Ltd was born.
Restrain Company’s ethylene systems are operating in all types of onion and potato stores, from bulk ambient to high tech box refrigerated. The Restrain catalytic ethylene generator produces ethylene in situ from Restrain fuel without the explosive risks that ethylene cylinders can pose. There is no need for safety cages, bulky cylinders or explosive warning meters. Importantly, the Restrain generator weighs only 10kg and is easily moved.