November the 2nd, 2015 — New Brighton (Minnesota, USA) — Calyxt, Inc., a Minnesota-based company focusing on developing healthier food products to benefit both consumers and farmers, today announced that it has completed the first field trials in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan of its cold storable potato.
A significant amount of potatoes harvested each fall are cold-stored to ensure a continuous supply throughout the year. During cold storage, reducing sugars can accumulate in the potatoes and when cooked at temperatures above 250°F, the reducing sugars interact with free amino acids to form acrylamide. The National Toxicology Program and the International Agency for Research on Cancer considers acrylamide a ‘probable’ human carcinogen.
Our scientists at Calyxt have inactivated the enzyme responsible for the degradation of sugars in the tuber, thus reducing both the sweetening of cold-stored potatoes and also the creation of acrylamide during frying.
Calyxt has previously validated the effectiveness of its cold-storable potatoes in the greenhouse and the harvest of the multi-location field trials is an important next step for demonstrating the cold-storable trait from field-grown material. In addition to increasing the amount of material to conduct commercial cold storage assays, certified seed production is underway to facilitate a commercial launch.
“We are very pleased by the results of our field trials, that continues to demonstrate Calyxt is an innovated player in the potato industry. Cold-storable, non-transgenic potatoes provide a continuous, high quality supply of potatoes and also increases the usable yield for the French fries, potato chips and fresh market industries,” said Dan Voytas, Chief Scientific Officer of Calyxt, Inc.