The 70-foot-long semi truck and trailer carrying a 28-foot-long likeness of an Idaho russet potato took a nationwide tour for seven months this year.
The 2012 tour ended at Fresh Summit but will resume next spring, said Seth Pemsler, vice president, retail and international.
The commission also brought the theme inside with Race to Win potato truck races. The events drew a crowd of spectators and at times resembled a demolition derby. Winners received Spuddy Buddy stuffed toys or other prizes.
Raleigh, N.C.-based L&M is marketing Idaho russet potatoes from grower-shipper High Country Potato, Rexburg, Idaho, said Adam Lytch, L&M operations manager.
“Partnering with an Idaho grower that big really helped secure our supply and allow us to provide pretty much year-round,” he said.
High Country, which ships about 1.5 million 50-pound sacks annually, plans to pack under its own Oven King label as well as L&M’s Nature’s Delight and Family Farms labels.
Louisiana State University
Louisiana State University’s AgCenter, Baton Rouge, has introduced Orleans, a new sweet potato variety that resembles the beauregard variety.
Both varieties have smooth, light skin and deep orange flesh as well as similar sugars and flavor, according to a news release.
Orleans produces more consistent root quality and a higher percentage of U.S. No. 1’s for the fresh market, compared to beauregard.
Nonpareil Corp., Blackfoot, Idaho, has a new co-packing arrangement with Washington Lettuce & Vegetable Co., Mount Vernon, Wash., to offer expanded yellow, red and white potato options for the Betty Crocker line, said Dean Cunningham, vice president of Washington Lettuce & Vegetable Co.
North Bay Produce
North Bay Produce Inc., Traverse City, Mich., has opened a warehouse in Mascoutah, Ill., said Jan VanDriesseche, national marketing representative.
VanDriesseche said the new warehouse will handle East and Midwest berry business for the shipper.
Near an airport, the warehouse will receive berry shipments from charter flights from Mexico and possibly Chile and other areas, he said. The warehouse is 36,000 square feet, and VanDriesseche said the company plans to double that capacity within 2 1/2 years.
Expanding her work to boost the quality of life in banana-growing regions, Mayra Velazquez de Leon, president of Organics Unlimited, San Diego, recently launched a website at www.growbananas.org.
She said the “GROW” in the Web address is short for Giving Resources and Opportunities to Workers. Point-of-sale materials for retailers encourage consumers to visit the site to learn how their purchases of Organics Unlimited fruit helps families in other countries.