EAGLE, ID, December 14, 2005 - It's been 15 years since the very first Potato Lover's Month Retail Display Contest and plans are underway to ensure that the February 2006 anniversary event is bigger and better than ever before. That's right: get ready for some big bells and whistles this coming year during the annual Potato Lover's Month Retail Display Contest.
Along with the expected potato sales increase for stores that participate in the contest, the Idaho Potato Commission's (IPC) prize offerings are similarly attractive. Last year, every qualified entrant won a television; this year every qualified entrant (one per entry) will receive a free DVD player - a $69 value! Thousands of dollars in prize money will be awarded to the top five finishers in three different store categories (with matching category manager prizes), plus $100 to each of the 100 honorable mention winners. Adding to the prize mix is the Ad Contest Overlay Program in which the top five best ad entries will receive major cash prizes, and an additional 25 honorable mentions (more cash!) will be awarded.
When all is said and done, over $38,000 in prize money and an anticipated total of $150,000 overall (including projected DVD player giveaways) will be given away during the 15th annual Potato Lover's Month contest!
The IPC and contest partners KRAFT® Cheese Whiz® and OSCAR MAYER® Real Bacon Bits are hoping this year's contest will draw even more entries than last year's. The 2005 contest drew more than double the number of entries ever recorded; a record-breaking 1,784 retailers sent in their entries.
This year's contest includes additional enhancements that will make it easier than ever before to create exciting displays. Contest POS material kits are available at www.idahopotato.com, or via your Kraft Express representative. Each kit will include signs, balloons (inflatable Mylar Spuddy Buddy balloons!), and a detailed contest brochure including an entry form. High-resolution photos of last year's display contest winners and photos of the winning advertising spreads are also available for viewing online at www.idahopotato.com. (If you're looking for a little inspiration check these photos out!)
"This contest provides retailers a way to build interest and sales in the produce section during a traditionally slow produce sales time of year (February)," said Seth Pemsler, Vice President Retail, IPC. "Retailers that have participated in the past have all experienced significant sales increases, thanks to their creative displays. With the added incentive of the free DVD prize, the large cash prizes with matching category manager prizes, and the easy to access display materials, we expect to attract an even a higher rate of participation than last year."
There are three programs and three different ways for retailers to win big bash prizes. The three contests are the Display Contest, the Category Manager Prize Match Program and the Ad Contest Overlay Program.
Potato Lover's Month Retail Display Contest Details
To enter, retailers are asked to create an attention-getting display that promotes Idaho® Potatoes with KRAFT® Cheez Whiz® and OSCAR MAYER® Real Bacon Bits.
The contest is open to retail supermarket chains and independents only. (There are three levels of store categories, retailers should review the official rules to determine which category they fit in.) Displays must be in place at least one week during the January 23 - February 27, 2006 contest period. The displays must be set up in the produce section of the store and must include the following: fresh Idaho Potatoes (bag/bulk or both) that have a clearly discernable label showing the Idaho name and the Grown in Idaho seal; a clearly marked Idaho dehydrated potato product; KRAFT® Cheez Whiz® and OSCAR MAYER® Real Bacon Bits.
Retailers can use the POS materials (outlined earlier) and/or they may create their own display support materials. Creativity is encouraged! Entries are limited to one per store.
All entries must include an official entry form or photocopy of same. If entering by postal mail, entry photos should have entrant's name, address, store name, and business phone on the back of each photo. While digital photo submissions are encouraged, all forms of photo will be judged equally.
To enter online (or to obtain an entry form), retailers must visit www.idahopotato.com and click-on "Potato Lover's Month Display Contest Entry" and follow the directions.
Entries will be judged and prizes awarded by the Potato Lover's Month Display Contest Review committee. Entries will be judged on the following criteria: use of Potato Lover's Month signage; creativity of the display; how the display incorporates the partner products; perceived success in generating incremental sales for those products; perceived impact on the produce section and the store. The decisions of the committee are final.
All entries must be received no later than March 31, 2006. Please mail entries to: Potato Lover's Month Display Contest Review Committee, PO Box 1670, Eagle, ID 83616 (If using overnight mail service, please send to 661 S. Rivershore Lane, Suite 230, Eagle, ID 83616). All winners will be notified by April 30, 2006.
Ad Contest Overlay Program
Retailers are encouraged to promote their creative displays with feature advertisements and, who knows, they may win cash prizes for their design creativity. To enter, a copy of the entire circular featuring the Potato Lover's Month Retail Display should be mailed to the Idaho Potato Commission, along with a completed entry form. Thirty different cash prizes (top five awards, plus 25 honorable mentions), totaling $6,000 will be awarded.
Category Manager Match
Like last year, the Idaho Potato Lover's Month Retail Display Contest will award matching prizes to category managers if their store entry wins a top prize (first through fifth-place prizes)! The upshot is, if your store wins, you win!
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 words Idaho Potatoes and the "Grown in Idaho" seal are federally registered Certification Marks that certify to consumers that they are purchasing genuine Idaho Potatoes that have been grown in the state of Idaho.