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Council Directive 93/85/EECShow full title

Council Directive 93/85/EEC of 4 October 1993 on the control of potato ring rot

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2. Visual examination for ring rot symptoms

After removal of heel ends, cut each tuber transversely and observe for the presence of ring rot symptoms.

Squeeze the tubers and look for expression of macerated tissues from the vascular tissue.

The earliest symptoms are a slight glassiness or translucence of the tissue without softening round the vascular system, particularly near the heel end. The vascular ring at the heel end may be slightly darker in colour than normal. The first readily identifiable symptom is one whereby the vascular ring has a yellowish coloration and when the tuber is gently squeezed, pillars of cheese-like material emerge from the vessels. This exudation contains millions of bacteria. Browning of the vascular tissue may develop at this stage. At first, these symptoms may be restricted to one part of the ring, not necessarily close to the heel end and may gradually extend to the whole ring. As the infection progresses, destruction of the vascular tissue occurs; the outer cortex may become separated from the inner cortex. In advanced stages of infection, cracks appear on the surface of the tuber, which are often reddish-brown at their margins. Secondary fungal or bacterial invasion may mask the symptoms and it may be difficult, if not impossible, to distinguish advanced ring rot symptoms from other tuber rots.

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