May/June 2019
Column: Spuds and sports are a great match By Frank Muir, Idaho Potato Commission

Piles of scientific studies show that potatoes are exceptionally healthy and provide many of the essential vitamins and minerals athletes need for peak performance.  

Frank-MuirThe Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) has always considered Idaho potatoes to be a premium performance food. Piles of scientific studies show that potatoes are exceptionally healthy and provide many of the essential vitamins and minerals athletes need for peak performance.

We’ve found one of the best ways to communicate that potatoes are part of an active, healthy lifestyle is to demonstrate it.

The IPC is a proud sponsor of several athletic programs and events that support and encourage folks to be active. They include:

Racing for Orphans with Down Syndrome (RODS)

Hundreds of triathletes and marathon runners compete around the globe to help raise funds and awareness for this wonderful organization that helps families in the United States adopt children in other countries who have Down syndrome. Annually, we provide a financial donation that helps defray adoption costs, and we help increase awareness of the organization through social media, national television commercials, signage on the Big Idaho Potato Truck and a check presentation at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.

Famous Idaho Potato Marathon

For more than 40 years this event has inspired Idahoans to lace up their sneakers and get moving! In addition to the sense of accomplishment runners have when they finish the race, they all get a piping hot, healthy baked potato!

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl

As the title sponsor of one of the most exciting college football bowl games, we’re proud to support the athletes who have worked hard to be ranked one of the best in the country. For many of the players, their participation in the game will be one of the most memorable experiences of their lives, largely due to our support. For the nearly two million people watching the game at home and see our commercials, we hope they’ll be inspired to eat more spuds! Many of the players who starred in our bowl game are now professional football players and help promote Idaho potatoes on their own social media

Supporting Idaho’s universities

If you’ve ever been to a dome or arena at Boise State University, the University of Idaho or Idaho State University, you most likely looked at the scoreboard a few times and saw the IPC logo prominently displayed on the most viewed sign in the stadium. Additionally, Idaho potato signage is strategically positioned along the sidelines and end zones key where television cameras are most likely to pick it up.

Simplot Games

Every year Simplot hosts North America’s premier high school indoor track meet held at Idaho State University. As a sponsor, the IPC donates Spuddy Buddies to hundreds of athletes to remember the occasion, as well as treat them to Idaho’s famous baked potatoes at dinner so they are properly fueled to compete in their respective events.

National TV Advertising

Whenever possible, from fiscal and timing standpoints, we try to get as much mileage out of our existing commercials as possible by airing them on programs outside of our traditional advertising schedule. And, much of the time our “added-value” spots support athletic events.

  • Our RODS commercial aired nationally during the Boston Marathon, the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, and the Amgen Tour of California
  • Every year our commercial airs during at least one Boise State University game, including their bowl games.

We’ll always look for new and eye-catching ways to promote Idaho potatoes as a premium performance food and align the brand with a variety of sporting events just like we do now. We’re blessed that the Idaho potato is nutritious, delicious and versatile — no wonder it’s been America’s favorite vegetable for close to 10 years.

75 Applewood Dr. Ste. A
P.O. Box 128
Sparta, MI 49345


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