EAGLE, ID, June 18, 2018 –Military commissaries across the nation stepped up to the mission of creating top-ranked spud displays for the 2018 Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) Military Commissary Display Contest.
“This year our commissary entrants enlisted the triple promotional power of Idaho® potatoes, HORMEL® Chili and HORMEL® Bacon Toppings,” said IPC marketing manager Jamie Bowen. “We had so many really imaginative displays, all designed to showcase the great nutritional value of Idaho potatoes for our nation’s military and their families.”
Over 90% of U.S. commissaries competed in two different categories by store size for the top category prize of a trophy and $400 in commissary gift cards. Each second-place category winner received $250 in commissary gift cards and a plaque, and third-place winners took home $150 in commissary gift cards and a plaque. Plus, an Idaho potato coffee tumbler was awarded to everyone who entered the commissary contest.
“This was probably the most labor-intensive display I’ve done in my two years here,” said Teredane Daguison, produce manager for Smokey Point Commissary in Marysville, Washington, which garnered top honors for Category 1 commissaries (K-1, K-2). “We decided to make a full-size 24-foot [potato] truck, and the whole thing was made out of cardboard, even the wheels!”
The truck display generated lots of extra attention from customers, including youngsters who begged Mom and Dad to purchase the truck for them. Daguison said the store saw a significant increase in Idaho potato and Hormel sales during the display, “and we consistently had to restock the truck [with product].”
Smokey Point Commissary, Marysville, Washington
“Idaho Mania” broke out in the produce department at McClellan Commissary on McClellan Air Force Base, California, which won first place for Category 2 commissaries (K-3, K-4, K-5). A crafty staff member repurposed a tractor display and also concocted a giant baked potato for the award-winning entry, explained McClellan produce manager Michele Parks.
“Our shoppers enjoyed looking at the display and were always commenting on it,” said Parks. “And I feel our 5-pound potatoes sold more while the display was up—we did over 309 bags alone in just that size.”
McClellan Commissary, McClellan Air Force Base, California
Each in-store display was required to incorporate IPC point-of-sale and point-of-purchase materials, and commissaries had to keep their displays in place March 19-April 1, 2018.
For photographs of the winning displays and a complete list of winners, visit idahopotato.com/retail.
Established in 1937, the IPC is a state agency responsible for promoting and protecting the famous “Grown in Idaho™” seal, a federally registered certification mark that assures consumers are purchasing genuine, top-quality Idaho® potatoes. Idaho’s growing season of warm days and cool nights, ample mountain-fed irrigation, and rich volcanic soil give Idaho® potatoes their unique texture, taste and dependable performance, which differentiates them from potatoes grown in other states.