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Idaho Potato Farmers Cut Back on Zebra Chip Insecticides

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Some Idaho potato growers have reduced their use of insecticides designed to prevent zebra chip disease.

The Capital Press reports that growers are putting off spraying for psyllids, winged insects that can spread bacteria that causes potatoes to have dark bands when fried. Growers say they’re reducing spraying because of lower prices for fresh potatoes and processed potato contracts.

So far researchers haven’t found many psyllids infected with the zebra chip-causing bacteria in Idaho. Only one such insect had been found by the end of July in a Canyon County spud field. Last summer, researchers confirmed three bacteria-positive psyllids in Canyon County by the first week of July.

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