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Rick Worthington Potato Commissions
by Rick Worthington, click here for bio

Program: Farm and Ranch Report
Date: October 23, 2017

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Potatoes are grown all over the United States.

Idaho grows the most, followed by Washington. However Colorado, Oregon and California - among other states - also grow their fair share of potatoes.

There was a time when Potato commissions were in competition with each other, trying to outdo each other for market share and research projects.

But that all changed about five years ago. Chris Voigt, Executive Director of the Washington Potato Commission says they are all looking for ways to save money, and that means learning to cooperate with each other.

"You know what it used to be, every state was kind of doing their own research, and it was like, why are we duplicating so much? you know why are we doing this?"

Voigt says the commissions are all concerned about future federal budget cuts.

"You know, as we lose researchers maybe it'll be a point where you know Washington might not have an expert and then what are we going to do? So let's go ahead and start fostering those relationships across the Pacific Northwest."

Voigt acknowledged that each state performs research that is unique to that state and their growers, but where they can, they look to work jointly. For instance - potato growers are looking into preventative measures to avoid blackspot bruising of potatoes during the early harvest period.

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