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Inexpensive, efficient food crops that are attractive, tasty, nutritious, and versatile are needed in the Caribbean. The sweet potato has the advantage that it can be produced and harvested throughout the year. Usage of the sweet potato can be increased by breeding better varieties, especially those with little or no sweetness and bland flavors, and by better methods of preparation. A diffusion process was developed, which improves the acceptability even of the worst sweet potatoes. A household type process for making flour was developed; flours can be used in partial substitution for wheat flour. Insect resistance and stress tolerances are needed. Progress has been rapid, using mass selection as a tool. Varieties with new characteristics are available and need regional testing. Progress is being made in developing improved horticultural techniques and short cuts for testing adaptability.


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