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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, MAY 3, 2007


Contact: Tommy Fleetwood, marketing specialist
NCDA&CS Northeast Marketing Center
(252) 331-4773

Potato growers annual meeting coming May 21

Elizabeth City- Potato growers from across the state are invited to attend the N.C. Potato Association's annual meeting on Monday, May 21, at the Pines Golf and Country Club in Elizabeth City. The program includes a luncheon, farm tour, business meeting, golf tournament and evening banquet.

Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, David Frasier of the U.S. Potato Board, Keith Masser of the National Potato Council and Buzz Shahan with the United Potato Growers Cooperative of America are scheduled to speak.

"This meeting gives growers the chance to get together and compare notes, as well as learn about new techniques and industry trends," Troxler said. "Growers will have the chance to network with potato buyers for the U.S. and Canada, agribusiness representatives and other potato farmers. We hope this will attract potential growers from areas outside the northeastern region of the state, where a majority of our potatoes are grown."

N.C. growers raise about 18,000 acres of potatoes annually, consisting mainly of Irish, round white, red and Yukon Gold varieties with cash receipts valued at more than $25 million. These potatoes are harvested in the early summer and shipped to markets along the East Coast and into Canada for fresh consumption and processing into chips.

For more information, contact Tommy Fleetwood, marketing specialist with the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, at (252) 331-4773, or tommy.fleetwood@ncagr.gov.

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NCDA&CS Public Affairs Division, Brian Long, Director
Mailing Address:1001 Mail Service Center, Raleigh NC 27699-1001
Physical Address: 2 West Edenton Street, Raleigh NC 27601
Phone: (919) 707-3001; FAX: (919) 733-5047