Triple S: Combating sweet potato shortages

A root-based vine multiplication technique is countering shortages in sweet potato planting material, improving production for farmers in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Developed by International Potato Center (CIP) researchers and dubbed ‘Triple S’ (sand, storage and sprouting), the system enables farmers to store sweet potato roots in sand during the dry season, plant them in seedbeds 6-8 weeks before the rainy season, and produce enough vines to plant once rains commence. Sweet potato roots can be stored for 3-5 months and 40 undamaged roots generate around 1,500 vine cuttings for planting.

The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the European Union (EU). CTA operates under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement and is funded by the EU.