Ask Dr. Potato

With 926 posts, chances are there's already an answer to your question. Please try searching below before submitting a question to Dr. Potato. Use multiple words to help narrow down the results. For example, search for "potatoes" and "group" if looking for an answer on cooking potatoes for large groups.

Back To Dr. Potato Home

Within The Past Few Months Our Potatoes Have Been Tasteless, Lumpy And Mealy. Have Genetics Caused This Problem?


I am a cook of more than 45 years and my mom for more than 80 years and she is still a great cook. Within the past few months the potatoes are tasteless, lumpy and mealy. Have genetics caused this problem? After so many disappointments, we have decided that we might as well buy boxed potatoes. Although, I sure will miss my baked potato. What Happened???


You didn’t mention if the potatoes purchased had the “Grown in Idaho” seal on the bag, but I am assuming that was why you sent a note on to us. We have about 30-33% of the total potato production in the United States and while a lot goes into retail it has to have the seal to be sourced exclusively from Idaho. If the signage just says “Russets” that usually is a key that they are not from Idaho. Over forty states grow potatoes, mostly russets.

The other thing to look for on the bag, or on the plastic quick lock that holds the bag shut, is the potato variety. Idaho is the only state that requires this varietal labeling to my knowledge. Most Idaho® potatoes sold in the stores are either the Russet, Norkotah (a nice oval shape, shallow eyes, usually a little moister texture) and the Russet Burbank (more likely to bake up dry and fluffy or mealy). So check that next time you are shopping.

I’ve included a varieties listing link that you can click on to see some of the choices the produce buyer at the store or regional office has to choose from: Our Most Popular Varieties

Hope you will try us again and have a better experience.

Idaho Potato Varieties