Sweetpotato (‘Ipomoea batatas’) is a herbaceous, perennial plant that belongs to the Convolvulaceae family.

Sweetpotato was probably domesticated more than 5,000 years ago, in South America and/or Central America.

Sweet potato fertilization Credit: Cary Fowler, Global Crop Diversity Trust
Sweetpotato fertilization. Credit: Cary Fowler, Crop Trust

Today, it is the world’s seventh most important food crop, with more than 133 million tonnes produced globally per year, mostly in developing countries.

Although its growth habit is mainly prostrate, it varies from erect and semi-erect to spreading, with a vine system that can expand rapidly along the ground.

A wide range of additional information about sweetpotato can be found at the Sweetpotato Knowledge Portal.

Major sweetpotato collections

The largest genebank collection is held by CIP in Peru with smaller collections in USDA genebanks in the USA.

Documents relevant to sweetpotato