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Frequently Asked Questions

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Where will Innate® potatoes be sold?

Innate® potatoes are now approved in the U.S. and Canada. Fresh whole Innate potatoes, branded as White Russet™, are currently available in various grocery stores, restaurants and food service providers throughout the United States. In addition, Innate potatoes are sold in limited quantities in “fresh cut,” refrigerated salads and chip market sectors. At the present time, Innate potatoes are not available to frozen or dehy processors serving export customers. Simplot anticipates that U.S.-grown Innate potatoes will become available to Canadian customers in 2016, with Canadian commercial production beginning in approximately 2017. Sales of Innate potatoes and related products are managed by Simplot Plant Sciences and its authorized licensees. Innate sales and handling are distinct and completely segregated from Simplot Food Group’s existing potato product portfolio.


Are you pursuing approvals in international markets?

Yes. Innate® Gen 1 potatoes were recently approved for sale and cultivation in Canada. Additionally, Innate Gen 1 varieties have been submitted for review in Japan, Mexico, China, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and Taiwan. Each regulatory review typically requires one to three years to complete.


What happens to Innate® off-grade potatoes?

All Innate® off-grade potatoes are stewarded through the Closed Loop System (CLS) which directs them exclusively to approved U.S. and Canadian customers. They are not presently available for export outside of the U.S. and Canada. One example of authorized use of Innate off-grade potatoes is livestock feed within the U.S. and Canada.


How long to growers have to wait before planting conventional crops in a field where Innate® potatoes were grown?

The Innate® grower license with commercial crop growers is a multi-year commitment to stewardship. This contract requires growers to eliminate potato volunteers during subsequent crop rotations. The post-harvest volunteer monitoring period required in a grower license is typically 3 seasons (i.e., 4 years overall, including the Innate production year).


How far apart will Innate® commercial crops be planted from other potatoes?

Simplot Plant Sciences encourages all licensed growers to use separate production fields for Innate® commercial crops; however, if separate fields are not possible, the Innate commercial planting must be clearly identified and isolated by a distance sufficient to prevent crop mixing; e.g., at least 20 feet between rows and 30 feet or more at row ends. In all cases, equipment must be cleaned before and after use and potato trans-loading and storage areas, etc., must also be sufficiently separated to keep crops from mixing.


What gives Simplot confidence in this Closed Loop System and Innate® Stewardship Program?

Simplot Plant Sciences has adopted a comprehensive approach to stewardship that addresses each step of the vertical supply chain (seed to crop sale and management of off-grade and wastes). The combination of the robust Innate® Stewardship Program, training and verification of compliance, selection of experienced growers, highly qualified staff and strict requirements for directed-sales will also help Simplot Plant Sciences and its licensees identity-preserve Innate seed and commercial crops.


How will you manage risks associated with transportation, trucking and storage?

Our stewardship procedures require that Innate® crops be kept separate and identified at every step – from seed through sale. Chain of custody recordkeeping is required at each handling step, and licensee compliance is audited. Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) with specific controls must be in place during storage, loading and transit to prevent crop mixture. Licensees must store Innate potatoes and seed separately from other crops and in secure buildings. If any questions or incidents arise during handling, licensees are required to inform Simplot Plant Sciences immediately. Non-licensees may also contact Simplot Plant Sciences to ask questions or to report any concerns.


Where are you growing Innate® potatoes?

Innate® potatoes are being grown in most potato growing regions in the U.S. We anticipate growing the first commercial Innate potatoes in Canada in 2017 under CLS stewardship requirements.


What growers are producing Innate® potatoes?

We respect the right of any Innate® licensed grower to share information about the crops they grow; however, Simplot also respects their privacy and will not disclose that information on their behalf.


Will Innate® fields be identified?

Yes. The CLS requires the location of all Innate® fields be reported to Simplot Plant Sciences and clearly identified in grower records. For all fields, the grower must report the field name and GPS coordinates to Simplot Plant Sciences for verification and stewardship auditing purposes. Whole fields that are planted entirely with Innate potatoes must be clearly identified in grower records and on farm maps. If a grower chooses to divide a potato field, the Innate-planted area of the field must also be physically labeled (e.g., flagged or posted).


How are you handling Innate® potato seed?

Innate® seed multiplication will be strictly controlled by Simplot Plant Sciences. Seed multiplication will be contracted only by Simplot Plant Sciences and only with selected licensees who agree to transfer Innate seed under the direction of Simplot Plant Sciences to its licensed growers. All Innate seed must be cut, planted, grown, harvested, stored, handled and transported following strict segregation and identity preservation procedures to maintain seed purity and identity. Simplot Plant Sciences requires seed growers to spatially isolate Innate seed crops from all other varieties and to follow all other stewardship requirements for Innate growing, including volunteer monitoring. These rigorous isolation requirements exceed State seed certification standards.


What kinds of trait detection tests are available? How much will they cost?

The following tests are available from these independent, third-party vendors. Please contact these vendors directly for test pricing, availability and appropriate sampling methods.

Test Type
Phenotype assay kit for single raw tuber (color change kit)

Available Vendor(s)
Omega Bio-tek
400 Pinnacle Way, Suite 450
Norcross, GA 30071

Potential application
This "color change" test can be used to randomly check for the presence of Innate® in single raw tubers, e.g. to spot check trucks before tubers are unloaded into sheds or prior to tubers entering production lines.

Test Type
PCR-based (genotypic) methods for processsed potato products, e.g., french fries, chips (crisps), dehydrated

Available Vendor(s)
3344 NW Industrial Street
Portland, OR 97210

2219 Lakeshore Drive
Suite 400
New Orleans, LA 70122

SGS North America, Inc.
Attention: PCR testing lab
241 34th Avenue
Brookings, SD 57706

Potential Application
This testing has been validated for tissue from individual plants and/or pooled tissue samples.

Test Type
PCR-based (genotypic) methods for fresh/raw potato tissues, e.g. leaf tissue (fresh), tuber tissue (raw)

Available Vendor(s)
Tuber or leaf tissue
507 Highland Drive
River Falls, WI 54022

Tuber tissue (only)
3344 NW Industrial Street
Portland, OR 97210

Potential Application
This testing has been validated for tissue from individual plants and/or pooled tissue samples.


Will trait testing be available internationally? Are foreign markets testing?

Yes. In many cases foreign markets already test corn, soy or other foods for biotech content. In response to requests for Innate® trait detection methods, we have established key points of contact in several foreign markets, and are providing each with accurate and validated trait detection methodology in addition to information regarding our strict Closed Loop System (CLS) of Stewardship.


What level of tolerance for mixture is accepted by international markets?

Certain markets and customers have various standards and regulations governing the presence of biotech material. Until regulatory clearances have been obtained in a specific country, there is effectively a "zero tolerance" for the presence of Innate® potatoes or material in any imported food, feed or seed.