Sep 26, 2023
Solynta names new CEO, plans commercial varieties introduction

Dutch hybrid potato breeder Solynta has named a new CEO and announced plans to introduce its first commercial varieties in 2024.

Peter Poortinga joined the company as CEO on Sept. 15, succeeding Hein Kruyt, who cofounded Solynta in 2007. Kruyt will continue to serve as the company’s chief financial officer, according to a news release.

“I have had the pleasure of working closely with Peter in his role as chair of our supervisory board over the last year and a half, and I am certain that Peter’s experience will boost Solynta’s scaling capabilities and help us achieve our vision for a more sustainable future.” Kruyt said in a news release. “Peter has an impressive track record in the agriculture food industry as an entrepreneur, lastly as CEO of Plukon Food Group, which he scaled to a thriving €3 billion ($3.65 billion) multinational enterprise and industry leader.”

Peter Poortinga joined Solynta as CEO on Sept. 15. Photo courtesy of Solynta.

Poortinga studied agronomy with a focus on potato science at Wageningen University.

“I am convinced that the technology Solynta has developed is the future of potatoes — for consumers, farmers, processors and the planet,” Poortinga said. “Solynta’s mission to make a positive contribution to farmer economics and world food security is one I fully agree with, and the progress they have made to deliver potato varieties with natural protection against pests and diseases proves their commitment to this vision.”

With Poortinga’s appointment, current supervisory board member Juergen Steinemann will become board chair.

Commercial varieties to launch

After 15 years of development and cultivation trials of its F1 hybrid breeding technology, Solynta will launch commercial varieties next year.

“Our 100% hybrid breeding technology responds by giving growers disease-free seeds to cultivate clean, sustainable crops,” Jos Aben, Solynta business developer, told “The technology also lets you breed customized varieties within a shorter time, fully meeting both growers’ and traders’ expectations.”

Solynta recently exhibited its breeding varieties at Potato Europe, where it found interest from areas including North Africa, the Middle East and India, Aben said.

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