The Idaho Potato Commission recently hosted a harvest tour, giving foodservice experts a deep dive into the world of Idaho potatoes, as Amy Sowder reports in this news story published by Produce Market Guide (PMG).
Eric Meisel, a culinary specialist for Gordon Food Service, was among the attendees, emphasizing the importance of understanding ingredients to cater to restaurant customers. The tour highlighted that over 94% of fresh potatoes are of the russet variety, with Idaho contributing to one-third of the U.S. potato consumption.
Alan Kahn, the commission’s vice president of foodservice, shared insights about the origins of potatoes and the unique conditions in Idaho that make it a prime location for potato farming. The state boasts volcanic soil, 280 days of sunshine annually, and irrigation from a massive underground aquifer.
The 2023-24 growing season has seen a significant increase in Idaho potato production, with an estimated 14 billion pounds harvested, marking a 13% rise from the previous year. The tour also shed light on the shifting preferences in potato varieties, with the Russet Norkotah gaining popularity over the traditional Russet Burbank.
Source: Produce Market Guide (PMG), a product of The Packer. Read the full story here
Photo: Emily Painter of Pacific Coast Fruit Co. enjoyed seeing the top of the potato pile at Wada Farms. Photo credit Amy Sowder, PMG