Demand growing for specialty potatoes

12/06/2013 10:35:00 AM
Melissa Shipman

“The purple Peruvian, French fingerling and the Russian banana fingerling are all popular right now,” she said.

Education is still important to promoting lesser-known varieties.

“People are interested in specialty potatoes, particularly new recipe ideas,” said Jim Ehrlich, executive director of the Colorado Potato Administrative Committee.

MountainKing uses recipes to teach consumers how to use its Steakhouse Roaster fingerling product, Pope said.

“We have a recipe for parmesan-roasted oven fries on one side of the package and instructions for use on the other side,” he said.

Still, some consumers may be hesitant to purchase specialty potatoes because of a higher price and the question of what to do with an entire bag of one kind.

To combat this, Ehrlich said some companies now offer a mixed bag of potatoes that include reds, yellows and russets all in the same bag.

“It’s a pretty popular thing, a novel idea, but it’s catching on,” he said.


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