Idaho® Potatoes Beat Out Well-Known Commodity Groups in Industry Ad Awards

EAGLE, ID, June 19, 2008 - The Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) had one thing in mind when it launched its 2007 retail ad campaign - show retailers the power of stocking Idaho® Potatoes. Not only did they accomplish that, but also the comic book-inspired ads received accolades among the best in the industry. The ad campaign won numerous awards from the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) and the Idaho Advertising Federation (IAF), beating out well-known campaigns like Pork's "The Other White Meat."

The playful ads launched in September 2007 and mixed comic book nostalgia with the power of Famous Idaho Potatoes. Original artwork unique to the IPC depicted well-known comic book scenes incorporating Idaho Potato slogans, messaging and branding.

"The Idaho Potato brand is just as recognizable as some comic book superheroes," said Seth Pemsler, VP Retail/International IPC. "When you think of kryptonite, you think of Superman, and when you think of potatoes, you think of Idaho. What a great way to show retailers the power of selling the Idaho Potato brand - by featuring our famous potatoes in iconic comic book scenes."

The attention-grabbing ads running through August 2008 communicate the IPC slogan "when you think potatoes, think Idaho" in different styles of comic book art like the Lichtenstein (tiny dots), superhero, romance, flirtatious and "Archie" styles. The campaign also features some well-known characters, like Superman, with an Idaho Potato spin. To reinforce the ads, the IPC distributed stone beverage coasters to retailers showcasing four of the spots.

"The campaign received rave reviews, not to mention a few chuckles, from our retailers," said Pemsler. "It was so popular, we decided to add two more ads into this year's execution for a total of eight spots. Our retailers loved the beverage coasters. Not only did they increase awareness of the campaign, but they also were a fun reminder that consumers look for quality brands like Idaho Potatoes in their produce department."

The humorous approach to promoting potatoes has been recognized by ad industry professionals, as well. The National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA), the nation's largest professional association for professionals in marketing and agribusiness, awarded the IPC's comic book print campaign with six awards. The campaign took top honors winning a National Best of NAMA Award, which beat out campaigns by the National Pork Board, Pear Bureau Northwest and Midwest Dairy Board. The ads also received accolades from the Idaho Advertising Federation (IAF), winning a Silver Rockie Award in the direct marketing/specialty advertising category for the promotional coasters.

"The IPC is honored to receive such recognition by our peers," said Pemsler. "The comic book ad campaign really showcases our passion for potatoes and sense of humor for spuds all while communicating the Idaho Potato brand. It's rewarding to get such great feedback!"

The IPC is planning a second execution of the ads in its 2008-2009 retail print ad campaign set to launch in September 2008. Keep your eyes peeled!

Best of NAMA Awards

IAF Rockie Awards

Although Idaho is famous worldwide for its premium potatoes, some consumers don't realize that only potatoes grown in the Gem State can wear the "Grown in Idaho" seal. Both Idaho Potatoes and the "Grown in Idaho" seal 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.