Potato, the third most important food crop after rice and wheat, is globally consumed by over a billion people.
Potato arrived late in Africa, around the turn of the 20th century. In some African countries the production of potatoes is growing very rapidly. In recent decades, production has been in continual expansion, rising from 2 million tonnes in 1960 to over 30 million tonnes in 2013. Potatoes are grown under a wide range of conditions - from irrigated commercial farms in Egypt and South Africa to intensively cultivated tropical highland zones of Eastern and Central Africa, where it is mainly a small farmer's crop.
Poor quality seed is the top-ranked yield gap cause identified, followed by bacterial wilt. It is necessary to use high-quality fertilizers to increase yields.