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January 2005

January 2005
  • Continuing Education There was nothing like the feeling of getting my first published issue of Spudman in the mail. It was amazing. But what's even better than holding the finished product in my hands is knowing that people are reading it.
  • Ein Traum Von Amerika: The 2000s
  • Fresh Marketing Idaho's new fresh potato cooperative is going strong. United Fresh Potato Growers of Idaho (United) now has membership agreements from growers who represent more than 80 percent of all fresh potato acreage in the state.
  • State of the Industry The state of the nation's potato industry is constantly changing, and the past few years have seen marked differences in the world market and in the marketing of potato products in the United States.
  • Trading With Canada North America's potato industries are continuing processes started years ago to even out the playing field and assure fair trade for all parties involved. Ministerial exemptions, anti-dumping laws and marketing orders all are being brought into the discussion - on the Canadian side and U.S. side.
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Continuing Education

There was nothing like the feeling of getting my first published issue of Spudman in the mail. It was amazing. But what’s even better than holding the finished product in my hands is knowing that people are reading it. I’ve received some nice industry feedback since I started as editor – from people commenting on the November/December issue to others who just e-mailed me to say hi. I’m looking forward to traveling this winter and hearing more feedback on my first couple issues. I’ve also received feedback from people as they vote in our question of the month. Fifty-two people voted in our online poll, “How will the new Idaho potato co-op affect the fresh potato industry?” It was great hearing what people had to say on the issue. More than 50 percent voted that it will help growers set more stable pricing. In reading…  » Read more

Ein Traum Von Amerika: The 2000s

Wulf is still farming in Idaho. When Wulf Lebrecht was a youngster in Germany he had a dream – to become an American farmer. Before he could do that he helped his mother and siblings keep their farm going when his father was off to war. After surviving the bombing of Dresden, Wulf became a world class athlete and was Germany’s National Decathlon Champion. Shortly after, he left home to go to America. In 1955, after an eight-day voyage by ship and a few days in New York City, Wulf took a train to Idaho. His sponsor and employer, Jim Scheib, met the train and drove Wulf to his Twin Butte ranch in the middle of the night. When Wulf woke the next morning, he said, “I went outside and looked around and there was nothing, nothing for miles.” Those wide open spaces of Eastern Idaho became…  » Read more

Idaho Co-op Gathers Support

Idaho’s new fresh potato cooperative is going strong. United Fresh Potato Growers of Idaho (United) now has membership agreements from growers who represent more than 80 percent of all fresh potato acreage in the state. And only a couple months after forming, the group has already helped to stabilize prices growers receive for their fresh potatoes, said David Beesley, United’s secretary. “If you take a look at the market over the last three weeks, we’ve stabilized and advanced it,” Beesley said. “We have to be aware that the situation we’ve had just can’t continue – a truly weak job of marketing potatoes in Idaho and nationwide.” The cooperative represents more than 80 percent of all fresh potatoes grown in Idaho and 25 percent of the nation’s fresh-market potatoes. Membership response so far has been “moving ahead rapidly but is a moving target,” Beesley said. Though he had no…  » Read more

State of the Industry

The state of the nation’s potato industry is constantly changing, and the past few years have seen marked differences in the world market and in the marketing of potato products in the United States. To shine light on those changes, as well as paths for the future, Spudman has asked leaders from the nation’s state potato organizations to answer a few questions on the state of the industry. Read on to hear what they have to say. ------------ Will Wise Oregon Potato Commission President and CEO What are the top three issues facing potato growers in your state? What about potato growers in the nation? Several challenges face Oregon potato producers going into 2005. Among those are processing plant capitalization and economy of scale, export growth and trade patterns and consumer tastes and preferences – including the dieting trends. The doors of a frozen product processing plant will close in…  » Read more

Industry Leaders Look to Remove Trade Barriers

North America’s potato industries are continuing processes started years ago to even out the playing field and assure fair trade for all parties involved. Ministerial exemptions, anti-dumping laws and marketing orders all are being brought into the discussion – on the Canadian side and U.S. side. “Our goal is to have trade with Canada conducted based on a harmonized and uniform set of rules and regulations,” said John Keeling, executive vice president of the National Potato Council (NPC). “We’re, in essence, shipments move north and south subject to the same set of constraints.” Keeling, in particular, is referring to packaging laws and ministerial exemptions. Canada’s packaging laws set requirements for the importation of fruits and vegetables. Bulk shipments of potatoes – greater than 110 pounds (50 kilograms) – for processing or for repackaging from the United States, Keeling said, are prohibited. However, bulk shipments from Canada into…  » Read more
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