Great prospects for the future: Solana in its anniversary business year

25 years of Solana: Potato breeder gives a look ahead

Solana in its anniversary business year 2012: In the fall of 1986, the entry of Solana Agrarprodukte into the Trade Register was requested and confirmed – therefore the trading house of the traditional SaKa Pflanzenzucht for distribution and marketing of potato varieties and seed potatoes has been present on the market for 25 years. In light of the occasion the management reviews the past years and makes forecasts on the planned future advancement.

„Growth and expansion are our main focus“, comments Managing Director Torsten Spill. Especially our cooperation with Danish potato trading company Scanax Holding opens up great opportunities on Scandinavian and Baltic markets.” This development is expected to continue: To guarantee the progress of Solana varieties on the Russian market, the company has acquired major share in former joint venture OOO Solana Agroservice in Samara (SolAgro). „In collaboration with the Russian team around SolAgro Managing Director Dr. Vladimir Molianov we want to concentrate on the extension of our market presence“, says Spill. „The agricultural activities of Solana group with joint ventures such as farming company ZAO Samara-Solana are going to support us.“

Having opened a representation in France two years ago, now the foundation of Solana France at July 1st, 2012 is approaching. „We have successfully managed to prepare a market for our varieties which is continuously being extended“, says Spill. „Our future Managing Director of our affiliated company in France, Yannick Lefèvre, has laid the basis for multiplying Solana varieties in considerable dimensions in 2012.“ Solana is planning to celebrate the foundation of Solana France parallel to trade fair Potato Europe in Villers-Saint-Christophe this year.

Solana is currently represented by sales subsidiaries in ten different countries and working with sales partners and long-standing contracting companies that have licensed partnerships in over 40 countries. The global focus is going to be further enhanced by participation in trade fairs and congresses. Likewise, the company will be represented with its own stand on World Potato Congress in Scottish Edinburgh from May 27th to 30th. Another highlight will occur in fall 2012: At this time Solana celebrates 25 years of collaboration with Dutch plant breeder Den Hartigh B.V. Having started as joint venture with partners, Solana holds major share in the traditional potato breeding and trading house today. „Our longtime partnership with Den Hartigh has turned to account in various ways“, comments Spill. „Though the extensive business connections of Den Hartigh the entire group has achieved synergies, developed new trade channels and strengthened the basis of breeding. We are very happy about Managing Director Bernard Krijger and his team being an integral part of our group.“

In the anniversary business year 2012 Solana is also aiming at making the company and brand even more known and establishing the most popular varieties on the markets. Moreover, Solana continues to actively promote its high-grade varieties which did an outstanding performance last season. „In the segment of table potatoes, there are especially Campina and Belmonda”, says Spill. “These two varieties have proved their resistances, suitability for storage and very marketable yields. We are also very proud of Toscana which became a top seller due to her robustness and great suitability for storage.” In the field of varieties for the production of crisps, Solana is evolving into one of the worldwide leading breeders. In Verdi, Caruso and novelty Puccini for the production of crisps the company owns varieties with specific characteristics for agriculture and production. Even the young and high-yield variety Ludmilla became a ‘rising star’ for the production of French fries due to her excellent baking and processing quality.“ The most successful starch varieties of Solana – Quadriga and Burana – both achieved a leading position in all yield competitions in recent years.

„Our function as potato breeders means a great challenge, considering that the potato is a booming product on the world market“, comments Spill. „It is a versatile food product which absolutely meets the demands of agriculturists, consumers and industry. The global production volume keeps growing, however consumption is declining only in our home region. Therefore we accept the challenge through our heavy international focus and the development of new varities suitable to prevail on the international markets.“

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