Chipping In: Innovative potato farmers build a reputation for Maine’s standout spuds
“Focus Northern Maine” piece on Maine’s potato farmers and the $540 million potato industry. The state’s potato growers are embracing a range of new ideas and techniques in order to stay competitive against the vastly larger numbers of Idaho potato growers. LaJoie Growers, for example, have adopted GPS technology to guide planting and pesticide application to increase yields. Tom Qualey of Three Oaks Farm has invested in upgraded storage facilities in order to be able to supply processors (for chips and fries) with a consistent product time after time. Green Thumb Farms has branched out into the manufacture of vodka using the farm’s potatoes, while the farmers behind Northern Girl label hope to capitalize on the region’s culture and way of life. Another avenue of exploration that offers some hope for the state’s potato farmers: a potato-based bioplastics industry, although the funding is not there yet.
Idlebrook, Craig, "Chipping In: Innovative potato farmers build a reputation for Maine’s standout spuds" (2013). Maine News Index – MaineBiz. 6005.