Idaho Potato Commission Reminds Value-Conscious Operators of Strong Potato Profits and Offers Unique, Cost-Calculating Tool

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EAGLE, ID, January 22, 2010 -- It is unanimous:  Foodservice operators nationwide were happy to bid farewell to 2009.  Across the board, foodservice establishments were especially hard hit by the recession.  It was a wake-up call for the industry -- with food and labor costs facing tough scrutiny.  Today, many agree that the return of the “back-to-basics” operating principles are here for the long haul.  With more modest business management mechanisms in place, operators have continued to examine the essentials and the news is good for Idaho® potatoes!

In order to help foodservice professionals understand the tremendous value and calculate the cost of an individual Idaho® potato, the IPC is offering a simple-to-use, slide tool designed to determine the price per serving.  This “Cost Per Each Serving Calculator” is small (3” x 8”), made out of durable, coated cardboard and a cinch to use!  For example, if you order an 80-count carton and the produce supplier charges your operation $20.00 per carton, you can easily calculate that the net cost per potato is about 25 cents.

To obtain your free-of-charge “Cost Per Each Serving Calculator”, simply email the IPC at and indicate “Calculator” in the subject line.  Please include your name and mailing address in the body of the email and the IPC will forward one to you.  If you have multiple locations, request the quantity needed (up to 50 free). This is a “must have” for anyone who purchases food for your operation.

“Idaho® potatoes have always been one of the most profitable and healthful menu items for a variety of foodservice venues,” said Don Odiorne, VP of Foodservice for the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC).  “The raw cost is extremely reasonable and the perceived value is high -- especially with the premium brand recognition that the name Idaho delivers.  A large, one-pound Idaho® potato, in many cities, will only cost about 40 cents each.   It is quite a deal for the operator:  A  steakhouse-style, baked potato for 40 cents can easily be marked up ten times when paired with dairy butter and sour cream  or a vegetarian salsa!  And, if you think about the cost of serving a side of mashed potatoes or fries - you’ll certainly get your money’s worth.”

In addition to their affordability, Idaho® potatoes are extremely healthy. They are loaded with important nutrients and vitamins.  “Many of the nutrients and vitamins are in the potato’s skin,” said Odiorne.  “In addition to the low cost per potato, if you leave the skin on when making mashed potatoes or ‘smashed potatoes,’ you save on labor and actually serve the guest a healthy, hearty and home-style side dish.  It’s a win-win for you and your clientele.”

In addition to fresh potatoes, Idaho produces excellent dehydrated, refrigerated and frozen potatoes that earn high marks for taste, consistency and versatility.  These products also save labor and prep time and are priced competitively.  To learn more about Idaho’s convenient style potatoes, visit

To learn more about the IPC’s foodservice division and Idaho® potatoes, visit

The Idaho Potato Commission is a state agency that is primarily responsible for expanding the markets for Idaho®-grown potatoes through advertising, promotion and research. The Commission also protects the use of the “Idaho® potato” and “Grown in Idaho®” seals, which are federally registered Certification Marks that belong to the IPC. These Marks ensure that consumers are purchasing potatoes that have been grown in the state of Idaho.